Is LSU Among Nation’s Best At Utilizing NIL?

Is LSU Among Nation’s Best At Utilizing NIL?
Fact Checked by Thomas Leary

Louisiana sports betting is new to the states users just like NIL is for colleges top athletes. The issue of college athletes using their NIL (name, image and likeness) to make money continues to evolve, and a panel of lawmakers in the Republican-controlled U.S. House of Representatives has now turned their attention to it.

In 2019, states started introducing laws making it easier for college students to be compensated for things like endorsements and public appearances. What is allowed and not allowed shifts from state to state.

Then there was a landmark Supreme Court antitrust decision in 2021 ruling against the NCAA, limiting the association’s nationwide limits on education-related benefits for college athletes.

The NCAA is seeking a solution to the challenges of a system with varying state NIL laws. In June 2021 NCAA brought in a policy that allows all NCAA D1, D2, and D3 students athletes to be compensated for their NIL, regardless of whether their state has a NIL law in place or not. Rules against pay-for-play and recruiting inducements still stand.

Collectives organized by boosters or businesses are now everywhere pooling resources and NIL opportunities for athletes at schools across the nation.  

So with Student Athlete Day arriving on April 6, decided to take a break to look at the current colleges that have utilized the NIL legislation to recruit their athletes and help them maximize their revenue potential while at the school. And after LSU's women's basketball title over the weekend, what better time to dig in? 

Using, we were able to comb through the athletes who currently have the highest valuation in each sport, as well as the NIL collectives from each school who are bringing in the most revenue for student athletes.

Using an average ranking from those statistics, we were able to finalize the top 10 schools utilizing NIL.

Please note that this research is not an exact observation that represents the study, due to lack of exact revenue details. 

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Schools That Have Best Utilized NIL

Rank School Athletes Valuation Ranking School Collective Ranking
T3Ohio StateT37
8South CarolinaT216
T9Florida StateT522

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LSU's NIL Rankings In 2023

Coming in tied for ninth were the LSU Tigers, who tied for sixth in athletes valuation ranking, but placed 21st in school collective ranking. Good enough for a top 10, but behind fellow SEC powerhouses Tennessee, Alabama and South Carolina. 

The good news about LSU's NIL Rankings? Behind coach Kim Mulkey, the school just won their first ever women's hoops and national title, and did it in style. Unsung hero Jasmine Carson led the way in a 102-85 win over Iowa, making Mulkey the first women's college basketball coach to lead two different teams to national championships.

Can that title run push LSU up the NIL rankings in the years to come? Time will tell, but there's reason to believe the program is just getting started after going all the way in Mulkey's second season. 

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Volunteers Lead The Way; Tigers Crack Top 10

No. 1 is the University of Tennessee – with a massive marketing-generated collective – Spyre Sports Group - overseeing athlete brand opportunities. The university was No. 1 in school collective ranking, tied for fourth in athletes valuation ranking. That will only help the Volunteers across Louisiana sports betting apps in the years to come.

Behind Tennessee is the University of Miami – tied for fifth in athletes valuation ranking, second in school collective ranking. Miami Hurricanes booster John Ruiz was named a Top 5 collective by, massively impacting the men’s and women’s basketball teams and football team.

Tied for No. 3 are the University of Texas and Ohio State. Texas was No. 1 in athletes valuation ranking, No. 9 in school collective ranking. Texas has seen a number of big-time NIL deals – a pair of Longhorns football players, Quinn Ewers and Bijan Robinson, leading the charge. Ewers did a big deal with Wrangler and Robinson generated a lot of chatter with his deal with Lamborghini Austin.

Ohio State Buckeyes receiver Marvin Harrison Jr., son of the NFL great, and Ohio State Buckeyes basketball recruiting target Bronny James, son of Lebron James, are Top 10 when it comes to NIL valuations. James had cut his commitment list to three – Ohio State, Oregon or USC.

The University of Alabama comes in at No. 5 on the list.

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Mark Keast has recently covered the sports betting industry in Canada for The Parleh, and is a long-time sportswriter and editor, most notably with the Toronto Sun.

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