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When money drives the ball

By russellBUSH

The landscape of high school athletics took a change last week when the TSSAA decided that high school athletes can now sell the name, image, and likeness (NIL). This happened in college sports a couple of years ago and now athletes can make a lot of money off the NIL. It has changed where college athletes decide where they will choose to further their career.

My understanding and I have not read up on this much but the policy for high school athletes are different. A high school athlete under this deal cannot use their school to help an advertiser. For example, if they appear in an ad for a local business, they cannot be wearing their game jersey or use the schools name in that advertising.

So, the question is how will that change high school athletics as we know it? I believe that for the local athletes that it will not change anything. Most business’s in the area don’t have a huge advertising budget and the honest truth is that consumers are going into that business without the help of a high school athlete. Plus, on top of that, there are just not a lot of superstars in the area to help with advertising. There are great athletes but there are very, very few potential professional athletes.

I think the biggest effect will come from the private school area of athletics. Most 

private schools are in larger population areas and the kids that go to these schools come from more financially stable families. I think in a lot of cases you will see private schools try to recruit athletes to their school by using the NIL platform. 

Essentially there will not be a lot that can be done about that considering the NIL deal the TSSAA has made. The private schools already recruit and this will give them more weapons to use to make their athletic programs stronger. The landscape is changing and I am not so sure it is a good idea to dangle money in front of high school athletes. They have enough on their plate already!

For more of my rambling, check out The Beating Around the Bush Podcast available weekly on Apple Podcast, Spotify and other places you find your podcast.

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