Menu

New NIL firm will help donor collectives arrange, manage and monitor student athletes’ deals

By Michael Smith
Athlete Licensing Company created an NIL deal for Mississippi State’s baseball players after they won the CWS title.Getty Images

The quickly evolving name, image and likeness space has yielded an array of new business opportunities in college athletics. The latest is the brainchild of Bobby Bramhall, whose Nashville-based agency, Athlete Licensing Company, has begun working with donor collectives to help them strike NIL deals and monitor the income for college athletes.

Bramhall was a baseball player at Rice and played professionally for seven years before joining the Texas A&M front office as an associate athletic director. He left last year to start an NIL agency, but it wasn’t until the development of these donor collectives that Bramhall saw an opening in the increasingly competitive NIL landscape for his company.

ALC manages the back-of-house operations through software that keeps up with payments to the athletes and their fulfillment of the deal, whether it’s an individual plugging a business on social media or a group of athletes making an appearance at a golf fundraiser.

“We’re the back-office accounting for this entire ecosystem that is developing,” Bramhall said.

Collectives can be stand-alone businesses, part of a larger firm or nonprofit entities, and their objective is to create income-producing opportunities for the athletes. There is no formal relationship between the collectives and the schools. The collectives must remain a third party with no affiliation to the university because of state laws and NCAA guidelines.

More than 20 collectives have sprung up in college towns. Industry experts say every Power Five school will have a collective at some point this year.

ALC has established relationships with collectives that represent three SEC schools so far:

The Legacy Group in Starkville, Miss., facilitates NIL deals for Mississippi State athletes.
Spyre Sports Group in Knoxville, Tenn., works on deals for Tennessee athletes.
NIL-Auburn does the same for the Tigers.

ALC also has facilitated some deals of its own, such as autographed baseballs for Mississippi State’s national championship team that are selling for $399. Profits from the sales go to the players.

ALC makes its money by taking an undisclosed transaction fee on each deal.

Bramhall said the goal is to put at least 80% of each transaction into the players’ pockets.

“They’ve got a reporting structure and they can manage collection and distribution of funds,” said James Clawson, one of Spyre’s co-founders. “As a collective, we need that. But they also bring access to new opportunities, like exclusive memorabilia.”

In addition to merchandise and keepsakes, ALC also plans to help athletes with NFT offerings of special moments for teams and individuals.

“We’re providing ways for athletes to make businesses out of themselves,” said Bramhall, whose company will soon debut a mobile app where athletes can check their monthly statements and have an accounting for each deal they fulfilled. 

The emergence of these collectives could be leading to a new line of business for ALC. Bramhall said he’s hearing from donors who want to start a collective, but they’re not sure where to begin, so he’s looking into whether there’s more business that could come from the creation of new collectives.

SBJ Morning Buzzcast: July 7, 2022

Talking points from Sun Valley; Pac-12 retains Sports Media Advisors; Oak View Group to sell Top Golf national sponsorships and Rapino remains influential with new deal at Live Nation

SBJ Unpacks: LIV Golf tees off in Portland

Ahead of the PGA Tour’s John Deere Classic in Illinois and LIV Golf Invitational Portland, SBJ’s Josh Carpenter, and David Rumsey spoke with Sports Illustrated's Bob Harig and Brendan Porath of The Fried Egg to discuss the current state of golf.

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.”

Shareable URL copied to clipboard!

https://sbjcd02.centralus.cloudapp.azure.com/Journal/Issues/2022/01/24/Upfront/NIL-collective.aspx

Sorry, something went wrong with the copy but here is the link for you.

https://sbjcd02.centralus.cloudapp.azure.com/Journal/Issues/2022/01/24/Upfront/NIL-collective.aspx

CLOSE
;