Washington football team: role model for college NIL?


“My DMs are open for business. “

That’s a phrase suddenly posted by many college athletes on social media looking to make money through their Name, Image and Likeness (NIL) in a suddenly open market. Athletes can learn from the likes of the Washington football team (profitable despite a myriad of front office issues) and also from Johnny Manziel (who failed).

While Thursday, July 1 was a major break with the principle of amateurism that has defined university sport throughout its existence, for the CEO of the INFLCR application Jim Cavale, someone who has prepared years for At the time in the history of the sport, it was more of a dog-and-pony show.

“The reality is, this is the first day of a decades-long marathon, it’s not the end all either,” Cavale, a former Alabama baseball star, told SI Washington. “It reminded me of a press conference when a new coach is hired. Everyone wants to judge whether it was a good decision or not and how many games he will win or lose… I don’t want to call it exaggerated because that’s a big deal for the student-athlete, but July 1 was a marketing event. “

In case you missed it, starting July 1, all NCAA athletes will be able to enjoy their name, image and likeness after the governing bodies of all three NCAA divisions vote to approve the interim policy – to be applied until federal legislation is passed. or new NCAA rules are introduced.

Pouf … A whole new big market is born. If each student-athlete made a small amount of money, it could amount to hundreds of millions of dollars.

Washington mastered the art of marketing. Even at a time when the NFL fined the team $ 10 million following the league‘s investigation into the team’s workplace culture and owner Dan Snyder is “temporarily stepping down. – there is a progressive and positive movement. Washington hired Jason Wright, the first African American to hold the title of WFT team president. WFT has also hired Ron Rivera, another person of color, as the head coach.

READ MORE: Washington Soccer Team MVP? The hunt is on

By hiring this staff, Washington has taken steps to become more diverse. Wright and Rivera are two of the prominent names, joined by others including Julie Donaldson, who has been hired as senior vice president of media and content.

Oh, and WFT is among the NFL’s Most Valuable Franchises in Forbes’ Annual Report, valued at $ 3.5 billion in 2021.

There is something awesome about it.

On another level, there’s the reality that Cavale can help with – as the odds of every student-athlete cashing in is slim, making the market smaller than some might think.

“NIL’s first year will showcase the company’s great pendulum swing range,” Cavale said. “Swing is a student-athlete initiative. It’s no different from playing time. Does everyone have the same playing time?

It might be wise to listen Texas A&M icon Johnny Manziel, who couldn’t cash in, but now gives advice (ironically, for free) on Twitter.

READ MORE: Texas A&M’s Johnny Manziel and the ‘NIL’ rule: Aggies QB allegedly broke the bank

For some, the potential income could be life changing. One example includes twins Haley and Hanna Caviinder of the Fresno State women’s basketball team, who have 3.3 million TikToks and 515,000 Instagram followers between them.

The pair are now endorsing Boost Mobile, which took up billboard space in Times Square in New York City to celebrate the milestone.

The tricky part? Why does this new era look a bit like the Wild West? While college athletes can now benefit from sponsorships and sponsorships, they must still adhere to the NIL rules in their specific states.

If an athlete plays for a program in a state without NIL law, colleges and universities will decide whether or not certain activities comply with state laws.

“The reason there is merit in calling it the ‘Wild West’ is because there is not a set of general rules, as there is for just about everything else in is about student-athletes, ”Cavale said.

So, 10 states with their own legislation, plus 40 other states with hundreds of schools that have their own rules. It sounds messy, in terms of compliance. Similar to how programs build new facilities, revamp uniforms, and claim trophies.

Schools will try to leverage NIL for a recruiting advantage to make their schools more attractive to high performance athletes.

Could the University of Oregon add a new “build your brand” Nike building for athletes to their already over-the-top facilities?

Would the University of Texas consider adding Instagram handles to team jerseys?

When it comes to the benefits of recruiting, the best bet is that colleges will push the boundaries to add benefits and create the best student-athlete experience.

This is part of why over 1,100 teams, over 140 D1 schools, have engaged the INFLCR to help student-athletes establish, manage and monetize their NIL business through the INFLCR app in a compliant manner. Athletes receive instant content from the app (from institutional media staff and external media partners) to share on their personal social media channels – photos and videos at their fingertips as soon as they leave the club. land, court, pool, etc.

Athletes also receive personalized reports to track their social media follower growth and social media engagement metrics.

The INFLCR verified software, launched in April 2021, allows athletes to manage their NIL activity with a compliance benefit allowing school staff to monitor these opportunities while maintaining athlete eligibility.

The app also helps connect athletes with a growing list of market partners, brands and fans. Want to get paid for an appearance on Cameo or design a t-shirt? It’s all apart. If an athlete wishes to continue his education, he is advised by industry leaders and athletes.

This generation of student-athletes is almost an experimental guinea pig. No one is guaranteed to have money for their NIL – there are 500,000 student-athletes and only one has the highest hype to win the Heisman Trophy (Spencer Rattler at +800 FanDuel ratings). However, the ability for athletes to take the initiative to create and cash doesn’t just apply to the world’s Trevor Lawrence or the famous TikTok twins.

“Yesterday, not a group of kids woke up with $ 100,000 in their bank account because of the new rule,” Cavale said. “For kids who want a six-figure business, it’s going to be tough.

“The ordinary story is ‘I won a few thousand more dollars.’ The amazing story is ‘I built a six-figure business while I was in college.’ “

Cavale has tips for student-athletes looking for long-term, long-term NIL victories. The best way to leverage NIL business is to use a multidimensional inventory approach.

“Learn about all the different ways you can use your NIL to make money,” Cavale said. “Create a strategy focused on 2-3 categories. Yes, use social media to promote a brand, but also use social media to tell an interesting story without financial investment as it makes an athlete more attractive to a brand. “

More avenues to explore: “Appearances; Start a sports camp; Make an agreement on naming rights in your hometown so that it bears your name; Build a product / merchandise with a logo that has a story behind it; Philanthropy, organizing other student-athletes for a cause. “

Cavale encourages student-athletes to evolve, to see what works and what doesn’t. Perhaps the most important factor is networking with other student-athletes and asking questions to learn from each other.

In other words, “DMs open for business” is not the NIL story that will make the headlines or the bank account thrive.

CONTINUE READING: Who Decides When Owner Dan Snyder Can Return to Direct Washington Football?

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