Why ADs Can’t Wait to Prepare Their Programs for Name, Image, and Likeness Rights

The 2021 recruiting class will be the first to have name, image, and likeness monetization opportunities from the moment they set foot on campus. 

Knowing this, recruits right now are asking, “How will your school prepare me to monetize my NIL rights?”

The question carries real weight. The answer will have an impact on one of the most important decisions of a young person’s life. 

Recruits right now are asking, “how will your school prepare me to monetize my NIL rights?”

Coaches, recruiting leaders, and ADs have to have an answer for recruits and parents. It has to be legitimate and their NIL solution must be credible. 

One-size-fits-all solutions that look great in an announcement still have to produce results. 

The student-athletes who are already enrolled will be the first to tell the world how their school prepared them for NIL rights monetization. So whatever athletic directors and coaches are communicating with recruits, the school must actually be ready to implement and make happen.

Simply telling recruits, “we are going to help you with NIL,” will only go so far. The results will be measurable and highly visible. The way student-athletes compare social media followers today, they will be comparing NIL rights value tomorrow. 

Schools that don’t follow through will doing student-athletes a disservice that is seen by all. It would be like pitching recruits on academic success, but not offering tutors or academic advisors… building a world-class weight room, but not hiring a strength coach. 

So, ADs need to have a real solution for student-athletes today to get them ready for the rule changes months from now. The solution has to be credible enough to impress recruits, tangible enough to show results, and unique enough to stand out over the competition. 

The NIL Opportunity

Under expected NIL rights frameworks, schools will have no part in soliciting, procuring, or managing NIL rights transactions for student-athletes. The athletes will ultimately execute opportunities without their school’s direct assistance… but this will not diminish the role, or opportunity, for each school.

Rather than managing monetization, schools will stand out by tailoring programs to ensure their student-athletes’ earning potential is being maximized.

This is where teams and athletic departments can begin building their advantage on the recruiting circuit and transfer market today. 

The schools that are setting up their student-athletes to enhance earning potential and establish NIL monetization strategies will win recruiting battles. This is table-stakes for the next decade of college athletics.

In addition to recruiting and monetization opportunities, this is an opportunity to institute a life skill for student-athletes that will provide value long beyond their time on campus. This is about equipping students with the resources to build a brand and audience that lasts a lifetime. 

In today’s environment, these programs and the personal brands they produce won’t only result in social media monetization opportunities and signing day commitments; it will help students win in the workforce.

Preparing Your Program

Leadership in college athletics is ready for this. 

The last decade of college sports has centered around building and adopting technology to maximize multimedia rights value and recruiting potential for schools.

Now the next decade of college sports will center around using technology to maximize name, image, and likeness rights value and revenue potential for student-athletes.“How are you going to help me look good and make money?” will be asked by every student-athlete and recruit. How ADs and coaches answer the question will help determine the success of their sports programs for years to come. The majority of NIL rights value and revenue potential will come from social media. Even for professional athletes today, sponsorship campaigns begin with sponsors searching the athletes’ handles on social media. How many followers do they have? How engaged is their audience? How do they stack up to peers? Additionally, social media will adhere to proposed guidelines and the desires of the NCAA and NIL working groups. There are students on every campus in america who are already earning compensation from their social media presence. So why not student-athletes? Social will not distract from the student-athlete and academic experiences and will provide the tracking and transparency necessary for ensured compliance in all NIL rights transactions. The opportunity is there to take the lead on coming changes. For athletic directors and coaches, the time is now to build a solution to win in the NIL era of college sports.

Get Ready

We’ve seen this before. While the movement is new to college athletics, the last decade of professional sports centered around using technology to maximize name, image, and likeness rights value and revenue potential for pro athletes.

We built the technology to meet the market on social media. Every day, professional athletes earn compensation from their name, image, and likeness rights using Opendorse. 

We’ve taken that technology and knowledge – nearly a decade of experience and thousands of posts – to build a program to prepare institutions and their student-athletes for the future of name, image, and likeness rights in college athletics.

Change is coming… but you can be Ready



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