The Student Newspaper of Cathedral Catholic High School

Dons Press

The Student Newspaper of Cathedral Catholic High School

Dons Press

The Student Newspaper of Cathedral Catholic High School

Dons Press

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The Game-Changer: The Impact of NIL on College Sports

Ayva Moi
College Jersey making by money

In recent years, the landscape of college sports has undergone a major shift with the introduction of Name, Image, and Likeness (NIL) rights for student-athletes. Historically college athletes were restricted from profiting off their own image or endorsements while competing at the collegiate level. However, the implementation of NIL rules has opened up new opportunities for student-athletes to capitalize on their personal brands and has brought about significant images in the dynamics of college sports.

The newfound ability for athletes to earn income through endorsement deals and sponsorships has changed the way college sports operate. Student-athletes are no longer solely defined by their on-field performances; they now have the platform to become influencers, entrepreneurs, and ambassadors for brands. This shift not only empowers athletes but also challenges the traditional model that has conformed collegiate athletics.

An article by Inside Higher Ed reveals the rapid impact of NIL on college sports. The article states, “College athletes collectively made an estimated $917 million from NIL payments in the first year.” This statistic emphasizes the eagerness of student-athletes to leverage their personal brands for financial gain. 

The generated income by college athletes through NIL deals has surpassed expectations in the most creative ways. 247 Sports provides some of the most interesting deals college athletes have been able to sign. John Karyn, one of the largest college football players, standing at 6 ’10 “, 395 pounds, made a deal with WWE to promote both of their brands. Reese’s, the candy company, features a deal with eight football players that sport the last name “Reese”. One last example includes Ga’Quincy McKinstry, a young defensive back listed as “Kool-Aid McKinstry” on Alabama’s roster. He reaches an NIL deal with Kool-Aid. Oh Yeah!

The influence of NIL extends beyond financial gains. It has sparked conversations about athlete empowerment, equity, and the evolving relationship between universities and their sports programs. The ability for college athletes to control and profit from their image brings a new level of agency and independence. 

The NIL era is reshaping the narrative of college sports, making it not only a playing field for athletic power but also a marketplace for personal brands and economic empowerment. The impact of NIL is strong and is leaving a lasting mark on the future of collegiate athletics.

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About the Contributor
Ayva Moi
Ayva Moi, Staffer
Hi, I’m Ayva Moi, and I am a writer on the Dons Press this year. I am excited to learn more about our Cathedral community and report on these important moments throughout the year. In my free time, I enjoy going to the beach and spending time with friends and family.

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