Move over Olivia Dunne, Rutgers women’s soccer player Riley Tiernan is poised to be the next breakthrough college athlete of social media.
Now, Tiernan has a long way to go to get to the level of Dunne, a gymnast for LSU who is an absolute juggernaut on social media. But it is clear that Tiernan, a junior forward at Rutgers, is trending in the right direction.
On TikTok for instance, Tiernan is closing in on 125,000 followers. The variety of her Tiks (or are they Toks?) are pretty typical college stuff, from dancing with friends to downtime activities and the usual things that this generation does when bored.
She also has 37,000 followers on Instagram. On the social media platform, she clearly has taken a more polished approach to her posts as of late, several of which include name, image and likeness (NIL) posts (such as for Atlantic Physical Therapy Center in Manasquan, N.J.).
For comparison, the Rutgers men’s basketball program has 42,000 followers on Instagram, which is a strong number. What Tiernan has tapped into on social media is pretty crazy.
What this content means for Tiernan is the opportunity to cash in on her social media presence with financial opportunities.
As Outtkick notes, Tiernan recently signed an (NIL) deal with Adidas.
But what really stood out from Outkick in all of this, is that the sports, news and lifestyle website believes Tiernan’s marketability on social media is ready to take off:
“Rutgers soccer star Riley Tiernan appears to be the latest challenger to Olivia Dunne for the 2023-24 season, and it’s shaping up to be a battle for the ages.
“Big Ten vs. SEC? I mean, it’s sort of what college athletics are barreling towards anyway after this season. Might as well start now!”
This of course is all made possible by her ability on the field. Last season as a sophomore, Tiernan was an All-Big Ten selection and made the watchlist for the MAC Hermann Trophy, given out to the best men’s and women’s players in college soccer.
She also was an All-Academic Big Ten selection, underscoring the work that she also gets done in the classroom.