Built Brand will pay the tuition of all 36 football walk ons at Brigham Young University.
Earlier this week BYU announced Built Brands, a Utah-based company that makes protein snacks – will give all 123 members of the Cougars’ football team the opportunity to be paid to promote its products.
Built brands twitter announcement:
BIG things happening at BYU!!
— BYU FOOTBALL (@BYUfootball) August 12, 2021
The agreement, according to the program, calls for players to wear Built branding on their practice helmets and participate in experiential events for Built.
Walk-on players will provide additional “social media and experience promotions”.
The NCAA has reversed its longtime ban on athletes being compensated for the use of their name, image, and likenesses on July 1st – creating the pathway for endorsement opportunities for athletes.
The NCAA has taken a hands-off approach to NIL, allowing schools in states that do not have NIL laws at the college ranks to set their own policies. Utah has no lawcurrently, but the NCAA still does not allow NIL payments to be used as recruiting incentives.
Built Brands will pay every BYU Football player an amount equal to the cost of tuition.
Players entering the agreement will wear Built branding on their practice helmets and participate in events for Built.
— Front Office Sports (@FOS) August 12, 2021
Scholarship players can earn $1,000. For walk-ons players who are not on athletic scholarship – the payment can be equivalent to the cost of a year’s tuition at BYU, which ranges from about $3,000 to $6,000 per semester.
“This is creative and different,” said Blake Lawrence, the CEO of Opendorse, a firm that works with schools on NIL-related matters from brand building to compliance. “The first-move advantage here for both BYU and Built is very evident.”
Opendorse is a sports technology company that maximizes endorsement value for athletes.
Their partners including the PGA Tour, NHL, NHLPA, MLBPA, over 100 professional and collegiate sports teams and brands.
BYU’s arrangement with Built Now was brought to attention after the team’s celebration of the announcement regarding the partnership. It sparked interest among the players because it seems to provide the BYU Cougars, who are in Provo, Utah – a way to circumvent the NCAA’s scholarship-limit rules and attract different talent to their program.
Teams that play in the highest division of college football (D-1) can only have 85 scholarship players on the roster.
BYU is also the home of current Jets rookie QB Zach Wilson.