UConn Athletics announces additional NIL resources and partnerships for athletes – Hartford Courant

UConn’s athletic department on Monday announced plans to increase resources for athletes in the name, image and likeness (NIL) space.

UConn partnered with Opendorse in July 2021 to provide education, marketing and compliance technology to athletes. Nearly a year later, the Huskies will have additional educational opportunities through a partnership with the Peter J. Werth Institute for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, and the athletic department has hired Jason Butikofer as an assistant. Sports Director’s Special with special focus on NIL.

“There are an abundance of resources on campus that will help us navigate the NIL landscape, as we strive to provide our student-athletes with the knowledge and tools to succeed in this space,” said the Director of NIL. UConn Sports, David Benedict. “I would like to thank David Noble and the faculty at the Werth Institute for their expertise and willingness to help our student-athletes monetize their NIL. The skills they will learn through the programming available at the Werth Institute will serve them extremely well in the short and long term.

The Werth Institute and the Athletics Department have partnered to create Championship Labs. This subdivision “will provide support in creating a personal branding plan, mentoring through brand development, early-career business coaching, and assistance with financial planning and evaluation of job offers. brand partnership.

“The name, image and likeness provide an accessible way for student-athletes to engage in entrepreneurial behaviors that will evolve over time,” said David Noble, associate professor at UConn and director of the Werth Institute. “The Werth Institute at UConn will provide the highest level of creative support, start-up structuring and mentorship to student-athletes while creating opportunities for many students to further enhance their skills for careers in social media. , content creation and entrepreneurship.”

Butikofer, who served as director of athletics at Southern Utah (2015-17) and assistant director of athletics at Purdue (2017-20) and Washington (2020-22), will participate directly in this news. initiatives as an internal NIL contact. for athletes, coaches and staff. He will help athletes continue their training and oversee partnerships with the Werth Institute, Opendorse, Learfield and potential collectives.

The partnerships with the Learfield and NIL collectives are also new. Learfield, the media rights holder for UConn athletics, will partner with Opendorse to form a branded marketplace where athletes can more easily identify NIL opportunities.

NIL collectives, which are when supporters of a school’s athletic department generate funds to help create NIL programs for athletes through a wide range of activities, have swept through college athletics in the past year. . UConn said in a statement that the athletic department is working to explore and identify such collectives that are in the best interests of student-athletes. This includes the recently founded D’Amelio Huskies collective, in which 1991 graduate Marc D’Amelio will help provide personal branding opportunities and expertise to athletes. According to the Athletic Department, UConn fans are showing an added interest in collectives.

All of these NIL resources will be bolstered by the fact that the Connecticut State Legislature recently passed a bill allowing college athletes to use institutional marks in NIL agreements, in accordance with policies dictated by each respective institution. UConn finalized these policies before the law took effect on July 1.

Over the past year, international athletes have been restricted in the NIL area based on their visa category. In addition to the announced resources, UConn will also work with International Student & Scholar Services to support international athletes so they have the same opportunities as domestic athletes.