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🏅 "King Kong", Bling, and NIL

Teaming up with

Hey there,

Europeans are currently dominating the NBA, but is NIL destroying the European youth basketball system? Some coaches from across the pond are monitoring NIL very closely. Keep reading to find out why.

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KICK-OFF

NIL is Destroying European Youth Basketball

Europe has been a hotbed of basketball talent in recent years. The NBA’s last American-born MVP came in 2018… meanwhile, European players like Giannis Antetokounmpo, Nikola Jokic, and Luka Doncic have been dominating the league for the past half-decade. All of those players have come up through Europe’s robust youth basketball system – but that system is at risk now, thanks to NIL.

With so much NIL money being spent at American colleges, some highly talented youth basketball players have already made the trip across the pond for college. While it makes sense from a financial opportunity perspective, European clubs are now worrying about the long-term viability of their youth programs.

“European training academies will undoubtedly have to rethink their functionality, objectives, and orientation as development centers,” said Mario Fernandez, the Sporting Director for Barcelona Basketball, “Some first/second level clubs will have to bet on becoming training clubs.” (More)

Florida’s High School NIL Dilemma

High school NIL just became legal in Florida, which may further exacerbate the talent divide between private and public schools in the state. In Florida, public and private schools square off against each other instead of being separated into different divisions – and Private schools have been dominating as of late.

“(Private schools) have endless resources,” said Miami Edison’s football coach Luther Campbell, “Put all those private schools in their own conference… If you don’t play by the same rules, why are you playing against them? And now you add (NIL) into it?”

Because of simple economics, most public schools can’t keep up with the potential NIL fundraising of a powerhouse like IMG Academy. That reality caused Campbell to compare private schools to “King Kong” who will “beat up on Jane.” (More)

Tone It Down, Shilo

Shilo Sanders may need to downplay his flashy brand for the time being, as his public displays of wealth may affect the outcome of his bankruptcy case. According to legal experts, any jewelry he wears could be sold to pay off his debt.

“He needs to be laying low because that (bling) is going to raise questions,” said Nicole Stanton, a bankruptcy lawyer in Atlanta. That sentiment was shared by Mechele Dickerson, who teaches law at the University of Texas: “If the bling-bling is part of an NIL deal that is with a jeweler, he could give it back… A good lawyer would say you need to show up looking like a bum from now until the case is dismissed.”

All of this stems from an incident that happened nearly a decade ago in Dallas. Sanders owes a security guard from his high school nearly $12M after he didn’t show up to court for an assault trial in 2022. (More)

Teaming up with

Teamworks, the leading technology provider for collegiate athletic departments, will launch Teamworks Wallet this summer. Teamworks Wallet (“Wallet”) is a digital banking solution built specifically for athletic departments and student-athletes. Trusted by over 700 NCAA institutions and 1,000 elite sports organizations worldwide, Teamworks is uniquely positioned to deliver a centralized destination for student-athletes to receive, store, and spend their money.

At launch, Wallet will integrate with Teamworks Influencer to streamline NIL payments for student-athletes. This integration allows collectives, businesses, and donors to quickly transfer funds directly into student-athletes' Wallet accounts without incurring any fees from Teamworks.

WHAT’S TRENDING

Ups and Downs

  • Two top-ranked high school receivers signed with American Eagle hours after NIL became legal for high schoolers in Florida 📈

  • Louisville’s head basketball coach likens the new compensation system to “building an airplane while you’re flying it” 📉

  • All signs point toward another influx of NIL money to women’s college basketball next season. Foot Locker has seen sales with women spike as a direct result of last year’s CWBB hype train 📈

DOWN TO BUSINESS

House Payment Plan Will Hurt Small Schools Most

There’s been a lot of discussion about the payment structure of the House settlement damages. The NCAA is footing $1.1B of the $2.8B, while Division I schools will handle the other 60% percent. Makes sense, right? Well, not when you see who the money is actually going to.

According to Sports attorney Mit Winter, 90% of the damages payments will likely be headed to Power Five football and basketball players. However, Power Five schools will only be handling 24% of the total bill. Some quick math: 40% covered by the NCAA, then 24% covered by the Power Five conference schools only gets us to 64%... Where’s the rest of the money coming from?

The non-power five conferences, whose athletes will receive negligible amounts of money as a result of the House settlement, will foot the last 36% of the damages bill – good for about $1B total. (More)

  • Popular shoe brand HEYDUDE continues its NIL dominance with college baseball deals this Spring. The company has invested heavily in NIL since they’ve been allowed to.

  • IMG Academy is partnering with Advance NIL for an educational initiative. As you might recall from Kickoff, this deal comes right as high school NIL becomes legal in Florida.

COLLECTIVE 101

The Collective Association Heads to Washington

The Collective Association (TCA) is a trade association formed almost a year ago to “fight for the rights of college athletes in the NIL world,” to quote the organization’s chairman. A big part of that goal was revenue sharing… which is happening now. So where does TCA go from here?

While the answer to that question may not be completely obvious yet, they don’t seem to be going away any time soon. TCA just added three more collectives to their 40-school roster, which, when combined, spends about $250M each year.

The organization’s focus now seems to be primarily in D.C., where they’ll be lobbying on Capitol Hill, mostly against the NCAA. “[The NCAA] is singularly focused on trying to get this [antitrust] exemption and protections so that they can continue to run their racket the way they do,” said TCA executive director Russell White, “They don’t care to discuss things with us.” (More)

  • Rutgers’ collective will host an NIL fundraiser at Top Golf in July to benefit the basketball team. After securing commitments from two of the top recruits in the country, the Scarlet Knights desperately need to raise the funds to maintain their roster.

  • Sherrone Moore has been much more involved in NIL fundraising than his predecessor, Jim Harbaugh. “Everything for the players,” he said about the school’s collective, “I’m not concerned about me — I’m not concerned about anything for me. As long as they support our players and everything that they need, I’ll be happy.”

ATHLETE SPOTLIGHT

Carson Beck

  • School: University of Georgia 

  • Position: Quarterback 

  • Sport: Football 

  • Class: Senior

  • Accolades: 

  • Coaches All-SEC Second Team Selection: Carson Beck earned recognition as a standout player by being named to the Coaches All-SEC Second Team.

  • Finalist for Manning Award: His exceptional performance throughout the season led him to become a finalist for the prestigious Manning Award.

  • Top National and SEC Rankings: In 2023, Beck ranked third nationally and first in the SEC in passing yards (3,941), and fourth in the nation in completion percentage (.724).

  • NIL: Carson has used his platform to land NIL deals with EA Sports, The Players’ Lounge, and Associated Credit Union.

NIL BLITZ

♦️ Learfield sees financial upside with college rodeo teams

♦️ Oft critical of the organization, SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey is confident that Divison I schools can operate well with the NCAA moving forward

♦️ UCLA’s KiKi Rice gifts her teammates Jordans as part of an NIL deal

♦️ Wave Sports + Entertainment launches social media marketing division

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“Put all those private schools in their own conference… If you don’t play by the same rules, why are you playing against them? And now you add (NIL) into it?”

Florida public school coach Luther Campbell on NIL