In many college towns across the country, sports marketing giant Learfield operates small satellite offices that house teams of local salespeople who typically work from on-campus locations.
At least one of Learfield’s local offices will soon get a new look.
As part of a new 15-year deal with the state of Alabama announced Tuesday, Leahfield is working with the university to create a dedicated Name, Image, Likeness (NIL) called Advantage Center, the epicenter of Crimson Tide athletes. creating a hub. NIL is an initiative that the company considers to be the first of its kind in Japan. The Advantage Center, which is set to open this year, will be located inside Denny Stadium and will also serve as the agency’s local office, said Leahfield CEO Cole Gahagan.
Leahfield and Alabama are committed to working together to develop a center that will provide both physical homes and staff to educate athletes about NIL opportunities and showcase successful local and national NIL-related relationships. planning.
in the rendering provided to sports illustratedThe Advantage Center will include many NIL-related features. A studio with a green screen that gives the athlete a place to film his NIL-related videos. Wall dedicated to Alabama player NIL deals and opportunities. A meeting space that could help foster relationships between brands and athletes.
The Advantage Center will be located adjacent to Alabama Fanatics retailer The Authentic, which offers NIL opportunities through branded licensed merchandise.
“For me, it was only a matter of time before we started building an infrastructure around NIL. This is the next big step in that direction,” says Gahagan. “There is no better company than us to promote NIL. We are connected with over 10,000 brands nationally and internationally. We are in the best position to help build relationships with
Advantage Center is part of an extension of the multimedia rights relationship between Alabama and Leahfield that dates back to the 1980s. Considered one of the longest in college sports, the new 15-year deal builds on “traditional components” while offering “new strategic opportunities, including an original content platform in collaboration with Learfield Studios. The initiative and the company’s fanbase infrastructure must be built to better connect with Alabama’s fans,” the joint statement said.
Learfield, who owns the multimedia rights to 99 FBS programs, has been stepping into the world of NIL over the past few months in an effort to combine the school’s institutional property, such as marks and logos, with Athlete NIL. For example, last month the company announced the expansion of its nationwide relationship with Dunkin’ Donuts. This provides a commercial opportunity for his NIL while dozens of college athletes wear school colors and logos.
After 18 months into the NIL era, university programs are beginning to devote more resources to this burgeoning aspect of the industry. At Clemson, for example, the university is in the final stages of completing additions to the Po indoor facility that houses the Clemson Athletic Branding Institute, a space strictly dedicated to an athlete’s NIL activities.
Several schools have recruited new staff with the express purpose of helping educate players about the NIL and overseeing the facilitation of dealings with third parties.