On Jan. 31, Grambling State took things to the next level and became the first program to utilize NIL (Name, Image & Likeness) opportunities as a tool to uplift the entire athletic program, rather than a few fortunate star players. Opponents of the new free enterprise in college sports say these financial opportunities only benefit the best players on the team. Those athletes who are All-Conference, All-Americans and future pros.
Grambling announced it is set to become the first program to offer NIL deals to all scholarship varsity sports athletes. The deal is unprecedented and the first of its kind in college athletics. Those athletes will receive annual income from this deal.
In the words of rapper Fat Joe: “Yesterday’s price is not today’s price.”
Jackson State is not the only school planning, politicking, pooling resources and relying on alumni and supporters to keep up with other burgeoning programs.
ESPN’s Peter Thamel reported on Grambling’s big splash.
“The income amount is unclear right now. The school has a commitment from two companies, Urban Edge Network and Athylt, to provide income for all Grambling scholarship athletes.”
Keeping Up With The Sanderses
The deal should do wonders for the Grambling State football program, now under the direction of former NFL head coach Hue Jackson. The move will enable Grambling to stay competitive on the field and become a leading player in the innovative and unchartered NIL world of college sports.
Deion Sanders‘ emphatic arrival in Black college football, his recruiting prowess and connections with major brands along various cultural, racial and political affiliations, has forced other schools to get creative and make impactful, exact power moves to level the playing field.
Read full story at The Shadow League here.