Michigan athletics announces new NIL partnership with Learfield
Michigan football really needed some positive name, image and likeness news heading into national signing day. While NIL didn’t appear to have an effect on signing day proper, the new initiative looks as though it could in the future.
A week and a half after Alabama announced an NIL partnership with broadcaster Learfield, the Wolverines are apparently following suit. In a release from Michigan athletics, athletes will be able to utilize official “marks, logos and intellectual property” with either a brand or the player’s established NIL.
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The University of Michigan and Michigan Sports Properties have announced they will incorporate LEARFIELD Allied, a first-of-its-kind initiative enabling brands to partner with universities and student-athletes to create co-branding opportunities around name, image, and likeness (NIL).
LEARFIELD Allied provides official partners with the opportunity to create deeper and more authentic connections by combining Michigan’s official marks, logos, and intellectual property (IP) with the brand’s own engagement and student-athlete NIL.
“We’re thrilled to further expand NIL opportunities for Michigan student-athletes and our sponsors through LEARFIELD Allied,” said Warde Manuel, Donald R. Shepherd Director of Athletics. “From being the first NCAA school to provide uniform jersey licensing programs for student-athletes to hosting the VICTORS Exchange, the nation’s largest INFLCR local exchange platform, Michigan Athletics remains committed to innovative partnerships that are beneficial to our student-athletes.”
Once official partners have connected with Michigan student-athletes, creative concepts and assets that include Michigan’s marks, logos, and IP get submitted to LEARFIELD and Michigan Athletics for approval to maximize brand exposure, reach, and engagement.
“Michigan Sports Properties has been deeply engaged with the evolving NIL ecosystem, and we are excited to bring co-branding concepts to our official partners on behalf of Michigan and its student-athletes,” said Jennifer Cadicamo, Vice President and General Manager of Michigan Sports Properties, the university’s athletics multimedia rightsholder and LEARFIELD’s local team. “As the sole representative of the University of Michigan, we are already in deep discussion with partners who want to expand their visibility and engagement with audiences in conjunction with Michigan’s talented student-athletes and official marks.”
LEARFIELD Allied builds upon the company’s intellectual property rights and market-leading college sports marketing services, which have connected local and national corporate brands to universities and college sports fans for 50 years.
About LEARFIELD: LEARFIELD is a media, data, and technology services leader in intercollegiate athletics. The company unlocks the value of college sports for brands and fans through an omnichannel platform with innovative content and commerce solutions. LEARFIELD, which does not represent student-athletes, provides services to its partners that include licensing and multimedia sponsorship management; publishing, audio, digital and social media; data analytics; ticketing, ticket sales and development services, and professional concessions expertise; branding; campus-wide business and sponsorship development.
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