MINNEAPOLIS – Since the NCAA passed a law allowing college athletes to profit from their name, image and likeness, the college sports scene has exploded, with players securing sponsorship deals.
The University of Minnesota football team also gets into this mix. A group of Gophers football players launch the “Twin Cities NIL Club”, a membership-based community that gives fans access and player support in a way that hasn’t existed before.
For a fee of $199 donated online, members will have exclusive access to a meet and greet with the team. They will also be invited to an annual NIL Club members-only tailgate, they will have access to an online community to engage with players and access player-created content which includes information on practices, games and matches at come.
You can register on the Twin Cities NIL Club website.
“We always knew we had some of the best fans in the country, now we can show the fans that we care,” quarterback Tanner Morgan said on social media.
All proceeds from sales will also support every player involved in the program. The Twin Cities NIL Club will have 1,000 passes available from July, and this is the only way to become a member of the club.
There are currently 24 football players in the squad who are tied to NIL deals, leading all sports. Women’s hockey has 14 players with Void contracts, softball has nine and men’s basketball, women’s soccer and wrestling have six.
Earlier this month, Edina Bayliss Flynn, who also plays for Minnesota Aurora FC, became the first high school student-athlete to sign an NIL endorsement deal. A day after turning 17, she signed an agreement with TruStone Financial Credit Union to endorse their debit card.
The Gophers are coming off a 9-4 season, including a 23-13 win over rival Wisconsin to end the regular season and an 18-6 win over West Virginia in the Guaranteed Rate Bowl.