Newsletter #25 | Oregon's Division Street, Chipotle's 1st NIL Deal, HS NIL Mapping + Monday news/tips for the week
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This Monday Newsletter includes:
1. Major NIL news of the week, including Oregon’s Division Street, Inc., Chipotle’s 1st NIL Deal, and HS NIL Mapping
2. What’s coming up in the world of NIL
3. Legal updates
4. News/tips for administrators, student athletes and agents
Oregon announces “Division Street, Inc.” to help student athletes create and monetize their personal brands
Several Alumni and prominent Oregon Donors, including Pat Kilkenny, Ed Maletis, Jim Morse, the Papé Family, and NIKE co-founder Phil Knight, announced on September 30th the formation of Division Street, Inc., a sport venture that will supercharge NIL opportunities for University of Oregon athletes (per Oregon’s press release).
Leading the effort for Division Street will be Rosemary St. Clair, former VP and GM of NIKE Women, who will serve as CEO. Rudy Chapa, former VP of Sports Marketing at NIKE, will be Chairman of the Board.
Adopt, a minority-owned brand and creative company focused on athletes and sport recently co-founded by Klutch Sports Group founder and CEO Rich Paul, will also be joining the group. Adopt co-founders and former NIKE and Jordan Brand executives Nicole Graham, David Creech and Josh Moore are included.
Sabrina Ionescu, the previous No. 1 overall pick in the 2020 WNBA draft, announced on Twitter that she will be serving as the Chief Athlete Officer, to make sure “the voice of the athlete is at the center of the company’s work.”
Chipotle joins the NIL movement, signing #1 WBB recruit Azzi Fudd and UGA Softball’s Jaiden Fields
Chipotle will collaborate with Fudd and Fields throughout the year to promote its “Real Food For Real Athletes” platform, which is focused on helping athletes of all levels perform their best through real food and real ingredients. They will also be the first college athletes to receive Chipotle celebrity cards, which are held by a small, elite group of celebrities, athletes, and influencers and grant access to free Chipotle.
Jaiden’s older brother Justin, the former Ohio State and Georgia quarterback now a Chicago Bears rookie, previously partnered with Chipotle before the NFL draft for his own crafted bowl.
Fudd is a graduate of St. John’s High School in Washington, DC, where she was a 3x DC Player of the Year, 2x National Player of the Year, and 3x Gold Medal winner as a member of USA Basketball.
Chipotle had thousands of requests for sponsorships from college athletes around the country and the brand has since responded by giving nearly 3,000 college athletes ten (10) free entrees in their Chipotle Rewards account to recognize their fandom.
Opendorse’s Brady Keller releases state-by-state high school NIL legislation and rights
Much like pre-July NIL mapping at the collegiate level, attention has turned to state legislatures once again- this time regarding the rights of high school athletes.
OSC has been closely monitoring a pending proposal to the New Jersey Interscholastic Athletic Association (NJSIAA).
Below is a breakdown of the terminology used for the mapping:
“Confirmed Permitted”, meaning, under the existing bylaws, it is confirmed that high school student-athletes under the corresponding association have the freedom to monetize their NIL, to varying degrees.
“Under Membership Considerations”, meaning, under the existing bylaws, it is confirmed NIL and amateurism rules will be discussed and/or addressed in upcoming leadership meetings.
“Confirmed Prohibited”, meaning, under the existing bylaws, it is confirmed that high school student-athletes under the corresponding association are prohibited from being compensated for their NIL.
What’s Coming Up Next For NIL
November, 2021 | NCAA Board of Governors constitutional convention
December 15, 2021 | NCAA Constitution Re-Draft Proposal Due
January 1, 2022 | Arkansas’s state NIL policy goes into effect
January 1, 2022 | Nevada’s state NIL policy goes into effect
January 1, 2022 | Tennessee’s state NIL policy goes into effect
Takeaways: U.S. House Subcommittee Hearing on "A Level Playing Field: College Athletes' Rights to Their Name, Image, and Likeness"
From the latest NIL congressional hearing this past Thursday afternoon, below are some of OSC’s most important moments:
Examples of Success Last Week
All 18 SAs on Kansas 2021-22 MBB roster (14 scholarship players and 4 walk-ons) have signed contracts with 6th Man Strategies, LLC. Run by former KU baseball players Matt Baty and Ryan Baty, the firm will represent the players in their NIL endeavors.
Morgan & Morgan, a large personal injury law firm, solicited the NIL help from four Kentucky football players for their latest billboard.
Amanda Christovich for Front Office Sports dove into some misconceptions about NIL deal availability for DII and DIII student athletes- includes highlights of several small-town athletes signing deals and showing that NIL is available for everyone.
Tip of the Week: For DII and DIII student athletes, NIL deals are still up for grabs
When NIL first started, most experts talked about the up and coming industry as a DI only club. And as endorsement deals, professional representation agreements, and group licensing school partners made their media rounds, many DII and DIII student athletes watched from the sidelines. But soon the data started coming in- brands wanted to work with influencers everywhere- not just the QBs from the Power-5 schools or the SAs with millions of Tik Tok followers. Then came Jake Brend from DIII Simpson College in Iowa. His 69-second video offering up “tennis lessons” made him a minor celebrity in the NIL world, and over the last few months DII/III student athletes are seeing headlining deals in their local communities. “Micro-influencers are actually more valuable to brands — like the athletes that have 5,000, 10,000 — because their followers are much more engaged,” NOCAP Sports co-founder and Chief Compliance Officer Casey Floyd told FOS. Andrew “Fresh Legs” Diaz, an offensive lineman at Massachusetts Maritime Academy, has a deal with Feltman’s Hot Dogs. The entire Whittier College football team has an NIL deal with a local restaurant, according to GMTM. Ky’Wuan Dukes, a freshman wide receiver at DII Johnson C. Smith University, was the first HBCU athlete to ink an endorsement deal with Bojangles. Remember Opendorse’s compensation per athlete by division:
Notes for the Week
Marquette Athletics announced their Marq-U NIL Initiative. Partnerships with Opendorse, BrandR and TEAM LAMMI highlight the program, which was announced on September 30th.
The Nebraska Athletics Department and its trademark licensing agency, CLC, have partnered to develop and launch TWO55, a new merchandise collection inspired by legendary Nebraska coach Tom Osborne.
Ohio State Compliance announced that they have reviewed 400 NIL disclosure over the first 3 months of NIL.
Tip of the Week: Continue promoting disclosures and look into how your NIL software can best fit your needs
Ohio State Compliance reported this week that they have reviewed over 400 NIL deals since July 1st. Disclosures are not the most popular topic of NIL, but they are arguably the most important aspect of NIL to athletic departments. Increasingly, schools (especially large ones) have been struggling to meet demand for reviewing deals. In OSC’s interview with MOGL co-founders Brandon Wimbush and Ayden Syal, they discussed their experiences working with schools. “Universities have put in some procedures- but they are lectures that aren’t effective. They’re sitting on their phones and laptops in 15-minute lectures and it’s not helping them engage in NIL. Athletes aren’t being educated on the need to disclose deals. We’ve spoken with a number of large institutions and not all their deals are being disclosed- and they are fully aware of that,” Ayden Syal told OSC. Since outreach from brands to students is often done through social media DMs, it can be difficult to get final arrangements/contracts to compliance offices. Not only is it important to continually remind your SAs to disclose all deals, but it is also important to regularly assess your software. MOGL and Spry are just some of the platforms addressing disclosures/reporting and streamlining the process, particularly for SAs in-season.
Notes for the Week
VaynerSports has signed Montverde Academy C Jalen Duren, who recently committed to the University of Memphis in August.
Shama Charania of The Athletic is reporting that Puma is “close” to finalizing a deal with Mikey Williams, the high school star who will be eligible for the 2024 NBA Draft and plays for Vertical Academy.
WME Sports has signed UCLA men's basketball G Johnny Juzang. Agents Carlos Fleming and Jason Goldstein are representing Juzang, who helped lead UCLA to its first NCAA Final Four since 2008.
Memphis freshman Emoni Bates has signed a deal with Roc Nation Sports. Bates is the first college basketball client to sign with Roc Nation, an agency founded by Jay-Z in 2013.
South Carolina junior forward Aliyah Boston has signed with Jade-Li English of Octagon Basketball. Boston is just the second women’s basketball NIL client for Octagon after Louisville's Hailey Van Lith signed with the agency in August.
Tip of the Week: Watch certain trends among the world’s largest sports agencies
This week was a big one for some of the largest sports agencies in the country (as well as some of the biggest brands). WME, Excel, Roc Nation and VaynerSports all confirmed representation agreements with top basketball prospects. Additionally, one of the most well known high school prospects, Mikey Williams, could be on his way to a huge deal with international brand Puma (not to mention Chipotle got in the mix too- which ranks 26th in largest worldwide restaurant chains). But it appears that agencies are taking their time as they dive into NIL- three months in many top prospects still remain unsigned. Could that be because they don’t see value in long-term NIL professional representation? Perhaps. But it can also mean that the big firms are simply not reaching out. Take Roc Nation- they have a solid core of NBA clients but only landed their first NIL basketball player this week. While selectivity might be their preference, smaller agencies and those specializing in marketing/media should not be intimidated to go after top-talent.
Have you checked out OSC’s website?
Head to www.OptimumSportsConsulting.com to find important resources and features relating to all things NIL. These resources include State by State Resources for Admins, Agents and Athletes, including our initial “OSC Summaries” for over a dozen states coming soon.
More to come too, including links to helpful state information- agency laws and information about school policies, as well as seminar/congressional notes, worksheets, and much more!