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NIL Notes: Miami football players continue to cash in

In Miami, Susan Miller Degnan notes QB Jake Garcia is the latest Univ. of Miami football player to have signed a "relatively hefty" contract to "promote the businesses of Miami attorney and huge Hurricanes fan John Ruiz." Garcia joins "more than a dozen" UM football players who have signed contracts to promote Ruiz's companies "LifeWallet and/or Cigarette Racing Team and participate in community service events." The players are represented by NIL marketing agents Malki Kawa and Peter Ariz of First Round Management, along with Drew Rosenhaus. Garcia’s amount was "not disclosed," but will "likely be substantial." DT Leonard Taylor, S Gilbert Frierson and starting QB Tyler Van Dyke will each "receive $50,000 over the next 12 months" (MIAMI HERALD, 1/20).

COMPARING RIVALS: In Portland, John Canzano noted the Univ. of Oregon "logged 273 deals for student-athletes" after the NIL "floodgates were opened" in July. Of those, 156 were for female athletes and 215 were for non-football players. The average deal was for $1,087, and the biggest was $100,000 for DE Kayvon Thibodeaux. A "pile" of those UO arrangements included a "trade of free Nike apparel and merchandise and no cash exchanged," which drove down the value of the average deal. Meanwhile, Oregon State "logged 48 NIL deals for athletes in the same time frame." Of those, 18 were for female athletes and 35 were for non-football players. The Beavers' average deal was for $5,340, and the biggest was $200,000 for gymnast Jade Carey (Portland OREGONIAN, 1/19).

MONEY MOUNTAIN MAMA: In Pittsburgh, Johnny McGonigal wrote former West Virginia Univ. AD Oliver Luck and D-backs Managing General Partner Ken Kendrick, a WVU alumnus, founded Country Roads Trust to "serve current West Virginia athletes," based on a belief that they "needed an overarching entity to help West Virginia compete in the NIL space." The LLC, announced yesterday, will "accept contributions from supporters and facilitate quid pro quo, paid business opportunities for participating West Virginia athletes, like autograph signings and social media campaigns." Country Roads Trust also is "supported by some of West Virginia’s most visible sports figures," such as Basketball HOFer Jerry West and former NFLer Pat McAfee (PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE, 1/20).

SBJ Spotlight: TikTok’s threat to traditional sports media

While tech companies are consumed with finding ways to compete with TikTok, almost no one in conventional media “spends any time talking about it,” said Recode senior correspondent Peter Kafka in an Spotlight interview with SBJ’s John Ourand. “To me, that’s just an obvious disconnect.” Kafka authored a recent column headlined, “It’s TikTok’s world. Can TV live in it?” He said the main response to TikTok’s growth from traditional media execs has been to “punt and hope it’s someone else’s problem a quarter from now or two years from now.” But Kafka said that ignores the trend of conventional broadcast audiences growing older while a billion younger consumers spend most of their media time watching short video after short video. “If you’re in the business of getting anyone under the age of 30 to look at what you’re putting on a screen, you have to think about the fact that you’re probably asking them to put down TikTok and watch your thing instead,” said Kafka. “That’s a very difficult ask. … [TikTok] is insanely addictive.”

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