clearn.png
Wednesday July 28th, 2021 11:29PM

Colleges scramble to ensure NIL deals are safe, compliant

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Chris Clunie chuckles thinking about what Stephen Curry's marketing potential might've been at Davidson during the Wildcats' remarkable 2008 NCAA Tournament run had Curry played in an era when college students could profit from their own fame and celebrity.

Curry jerseys. Curry shoes. Curry chicken sliders. Who knows what else?

“It would have been absolutely bananas around here,” laughed Clunie, a former Wildcats basketball player who now serves as the college's director of athletics.

The groundbreaking ruling that went into effect Thursday enabling college athletes to profit from use of their name, image or likeness for the first time has sent athletic directors and compliance officers scrambling. Now that the NCAA cleared the way for money to flow — with some restrictions — it is up to schools to help ensure all those endorsement deals and social media shoutout arrangements follow state laws and still-fresh, brand new school policies.

In short, their job responsibilities have increased and become infinitely more complicated.

Clunie said the work is focused on educating athletes about making sure their newly granted marketing decisions are compliant.

“We want to support them,” Clunie said. “We want to make sure kids don’t make bad decisions and get trapped into opportunities that don’t make sense.”

Charlotte is one of many schools that has tried to get ahead of the curve, starting a “Greenlight” initiative to help athletes pursue NIL opportunities. The school has partnered with COMPASS and INFLCR to provide education, monitoring, disclosure, and brand-building help. Many schools have struck deals with companies like that to help connect athlete to deal.

49ers athletic director Mike Hill said ”we have system in place where the student-athletes will provide information to us not to review and approve, so much as it is to ensure that it's clearly not a pay-for-play or a recruiting inducement of any kind and meets the minimum standards the NCAA has put forth regarding eligibility.”

Crossing that fine line is what concerns longtime Connecticut women's basketball coach Geno Auriemma. The Hall of Fame coach said he's made one simple request to his players: run any potential endorsement opportunities by him or the compliance department before signing.

“The last thing we want is to go, ’Hey coach, I got this great deal. Yeah, great, now you’re ineligible,'" Auriemma said.

Despite his excitement over the NIL rules, Hill anticipates there will be some issues to deal with in the coming months and years.

One of those involves agents.

While athletes can hire agents to represent them to handle their NIL deals, those same agents are not allowed to advise them on professional athletic opportunities. Hill said delineating between the two could prove difficult.

“I think it's almost impossible to police that," Hill said.

On Thursday, the NFL Players Association sent out notifications to agents, saying, in part, “Any NIL contracts entered into with college players by a contract advisor should be wholly separate from any future contract advisor services involving the negotiation of player contracts with NFL teams."

With the doors flung wide open for athletes to receive compensation for self-promotion, it is a new world for those who work mostly behind the scenes in college compliance offices.

Some of what is happening is contrary to the policies and procedures they've grown accustomed to for years.

“I think there will probably be a lot of nervous twitches from compliance staff as they see these (sponsorship) deals,” joked Cameron Walker, the deputy athletic director at Tennessee.

Chad Jackson, a senior associate AD for compliance at Baylor, summed it by saying, “prior to (Thursday), we simply said ‘no,’ We might not have liked saying ‘no,’ but that was the answer. It was pretty easy to just say ‘no.’

“Today, we’re saying, ‘Yes, but ...,’ Jackson added. ”And that ‘but’ part is verified through the law and institutional policy.”

All those laws and school policies are not the same, creating potential headaches for, say, athletes who are transferring. And while some guidance is common — the majority of schools require their athletes to notify them in advance before signing a NIL deal — there are myriad differences.

For instance, Clemson doesn't allow use of the Tigers logo in NIL efforts “at this time.” However, Tennessee athletes can use the Volunteers logo and name if they get approval from the school first.

“We have encouraged our student-athletes and given them a contact person where, if you want to use the logo, this is person you contact and this is the process you go through to seek approval for that," Walker said. “So it not only depends on using the logo, but how you use the logo.”

And what about shoe deals?

An athlete at Baylor couldn't sign an endorsement deal with a competitor of school sponsor Nike under a new Texas law. Tennessee athletes can, providing they don't wear the competitor's brand — say, Under Armour or Adidas — while participating in school activities.

There are many questions to be resolved, including whether schools with deep marketing resources will become more attractive to recruits, putting more distance between the haves and have-nots. But for now, athletes and their compliance officers are still sorting through the basics.

“The bottom line here is student-athletes have to take it upon themselves to step into this phase and educate themselves and think through this and do the right thing, while understanding the implications and all of the things that come with this new opportunity,” Clunie said. “For (schools), the work is less about helping them get opportunities but more about making sure if they're going about the opportunities in the right way.”

___

AP Sports Writer Pat Eaton-Robb and AP Pro Football Writer Rob Maaddi contributed.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Sports, AP Online Football, AP Online Basketball, College Sports, AP Business, AP Sports - NFL, AP Sports - Women's College Basketball
© Copyright 2021 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Liberty: Lots of travelers expected on freer Fourth of July
Americans enjoying newfound liberty are expected to travel and gather for cookouts, fireworks and family reunions over the Fourth of July weekend in numbers not seen since pre-pandemic days
5:09PM ( 5 minutes ago )
Italy beats Belgium 2-1, advances to Euro 2020 semifinals
Nicolò Barella and Lorenzo Insigne scored a goal each to give Italy a 2-1 win over Belgium and a spot in the European Championship semifinals
5:05PM ( 8 minutes ago )
Spain beats Switzerland, reaches Euro 2020 semifinals
Spain reached the semifinals of the European Championship by beating Switzerland 3-1 in a penalty shootout following a 1-1 draw through extra time
4:56PM ( 17 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
With family ties, Korda of US heads to Wimbledon's 4th round
Sebastian Korda is the son of two former professional tennis players and the brother of two current stars of women's golf
4:27PM ( 46 minutes ago )
EXPLAINER: Olympics are harder on marijuana than pro sports
Though pro leagues are slowly adjusting to the reality that marijuana is not a performance-enhancing drug, it remains squarely on the banned list for Olympic sports
4:00PM ( 1 hour ago )
NBA East final remains in holding pattern over key injuries
The wait to see who's going to play has been a suspenseful part of this year's Eastern Conference final
3:59PM ( 1 hour ago )
AP Sports
NFL fines Washington $10M after misconduct investigation
The NFL has fined the Washington Football Team $10 million and owner Dan Snyder is stepping away from day-to-day operations after an independent investigation into the organization's workplace misconduct
5:36PM ( 23 hours ago )
Rumsfeld, a cunning leader who oversaw a ruinous Iraq war
Calling Donald H
12:06AM ( 1 day ago )
Rumsfeld, a cunning leader who oversaw a ruinous Iraq war
Calling Donald H
11:23PM ( 1 day ago )
AP Online Football
Without Giannis, Bucks beat Hawks 123-112 for 3-2 lead
Brook Lopez scored a playoff career-high 33 points and the Milwaukee Bucks withstood Giannis Antetokounmpo’s absence and beat the Atlanta Hawks 123-112 on Thursday to regain the lead in the Eastern Conference finals
2:49AM ( 14 hours ago )
Bucks' Antetokounmpo (knee) out for Game 5 of Eastern finals
Giannis Antetokounmpo is out for the Milwaukee Bucks’ Game 5 matchup with the Atlanta Hawks in the Eastern Conference finals Thursday night
8:10PM ( 21 hours ago )
Analysis: Suns' worst-to-first turnaround is nearly complete
The seeds for this were planted nearly a year ago
3:37PM ( 1 day ago )
AP Online Basketball
Mississippi St shuts down Vandy again for 1st national title
Will Bednar and Landon Sims combined on a one-hitter, Mississippi State scored early and built on its lead, and the Bulldogs won their first national championship with a 9-0 victory over Vanderbilt in the deciding third game of the College World Series finals
12:02AM ( 1 day ago )
Mississippi St shuts down Vandy again for 1st national title
Will Bednar and Landon Sims combined on a one-hitter, Mississippi State scored early and built on its lead, and the Bulldogs won their first national championship with a 9-0 victory over Vanderbilt in the deciding third game of the College World Series finals
11:05PM ( 1 day ago )
NCAA clears way for athlete compensation as state laws loom
The NCAA has cleared the way for athletes to profit off their fame and celebrity
10:08PM ( 1 day ago )
College Sports
US hiring accelerated in June as workers earned higher pay
America’s employers added 850,000 jobs in June, well above the average of the previous three months and a sign that companies may be having an easier time finding enough workers to fill open jobs
4:18PM ( 55 minutes ago )
Stocks again post records following encouraging jobs data
Stocks are again closing higher on Wall Street, with the S&P 500 posting its seventh straight gain and seventh consecutive all-time high
4:16PM ( 58 minutes ago )
Tax law experts see 'strong' case against Trump Org. CFO
The extravagant perks the Trump Organization lavished onto its CFO Allen Weisselberg _ apartments, cars, cash to holiday tips, tuition for his grandchildren to name a few _ go well beyond the level of well compensating a valued employee
4:15PM ( 59 minutes ago )
AP Business
NFL highlights minority candidates at QB Coaching Summit
Troy Vincent wrapped up the NFL’s three-day General Manager Forum and Quarterback Coaching Summit with a passionate plea to anyone who still thinks there aren’t worthy Black candidates for head coaching positions
2:31AM ( 1 week ago )
Eat, drink and be merry: Food pairs well with Olympic spot
Athletes spend months, sometimes years, obeying strict diets that are geared toward the goal of making the Olympics
3:32PM ( 1 week ago )
Darvish fans 11, Padres get 2 big homers to beat Dodgers 6-2
Yu Darvish struck out 11 in six brilliant innings to become the fastest big leaguer to reach 1,500 for his career, Manny Machado and Jake Cronenworth homered and the San Diego Padres beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 6-2 in the opener of a three-game series between the NL West rivals
3:01AM ( 1 week ago )
AP Sports - NFL
Collen 'going to be me' taking over Baylor women's program
Nicki Collen is going to be herself as head coach for three-time women's national champion Baylor
6:46PM ( 1 month ago )
NCAA extends contract of President Mark Emmert through 2025
The NCAA Board of Governors has voted to extend the contract of President Mark Emmert by two years through 2025
10:24PM ( 2 months ago )
Mulkey celebrates emotional homecoming at LSU introduction
Hall of Fame coach Kim Mulkey’s introduction at LSU had an overriding theme that echoed constantly under the domed roof of the Pete Maravich Assembly Center
8:20PM ( 2 months ago )
AP Sports - Women's College Basketball
Liberty: Lots of travelers expected on freer Fourth of July
Americans enjoying newfound liberty are expected to travel and gather for cookouts, fireworks and family reunions over the Fourth of July weekend in numbers not seen since pre-pandemic days
5:09PM ( 5 minutes ago )
Italy beats Belgium 2-1, advances to Euro 2020 semifinals
Nicolò Barella and Lorenzo Insigne scored a goal each to give Italy a 2-1 win over Belgium and a spot in the European Championship semifinals
5:05PM ( 9 minutes ago )
Spain beats Switzerland, reaches Euro 2020 semifinals
Spain reached the semifinals of the European Championship by beating Switzerland 3-1 in a penalty shootout following a 1-1 draw through extra time
4:56PM ( 17 minutes ago )
EXPLAINER: When is the US war in Afghanistan really over?
As the last U.S. combat troops prepare to leave Afghanistan, the question arises: When is the war really over
4:48PM ( 26 minutes ago )
The Latest: Murray eliminated by Shapovalov at Wimbledon
Wimbledon crowd favorite Andy Murray has been eliminated in straight sets in the third round by No. 10-seeded Denis Shapovalov
4:46PM ( 27 minutes ago )