“Tackle Football Again, I Would Do It In A Heartbeat” | Bella Rasmussen Scores Historic NIL Deal, But Is College Football In Her Future?

Bella Rasmussen is first girl to land endorsement deal for playing HS. Football
(Screenshot/KTLA)

The world of NIL is now more vibrant as Bella Rasmussen has become the first girl to land an endorsement deal for playing football. It is her second time making history this year. A few months ago, in mid-October, Rasmussen made history in California high school history, becoming the first girl to score two touchdowns in a varsity football game.

The Laguna Beach Breakers star scored a deal with KeyWise AI to promote their Skye app, which “acts as a fitness tracker for your brain.” The company’s mission is to “replace this guesswork with objective measurements for mental health.”

Rasmussen Makes Mental Health A Priority

“Mental health is important for anybody, not just somebody that’s an athlete on an all-boys team as a girl,” Rasmussen said to Sports Illustrated after news of her NIL deal was made public. “Being an athlete, there’s a huge mental toll. That’s not talked about a lot.”

The company tweeted its joy at having the young athlete represent their brand.

“Excited to partner with Bella Rasmussen helping people take control of their mental health!,” KeyWise tweeted.

Rasmussen is on the Laguna Beach High School varsity football team and is listed as a running back / defensive end. The 18-year-old Orange County-based student-athlete scored twice against Godinez Fundamental High School in the second quarter on Oct. 14th. Although seven girls have scored a touchdown in a varsity game, according to Cal-Hi Sports, Rasmussen is the only one to have achieved the feat twice in one game.

The feat attracted multiple name, image, and likeness offers to Rasmussen after she gained nationwide popularity from the two-touchdown game. After being approached by numerous companies, she ultimately signed a deal with the company that focused on what was important to her, mental health.

“In general, i’ve seen the effects of bad mental health and mental illnesses and how that’s damaged communities and people close to me, too,” Rasmussen continued to Sports Illustrated. “That’s always been something that’s important to me.”

The Rasmussen Factor

Rasmussen was the difference-maker for the Breakers as she finished her senior high school football season with a California Interscholastic Federation Southern Section Division 9 championship. The win was the school’s first championship since 1946. Her team’s successes helped break the school’s almost 80-year championship drought.

Interestingly, Rasmussen has yet to make up her mind on pursuing football further in college, yet she still has a NIL deal. That within itself is also historic.

“I feel like it goes well with the narrative,” Rasmussen continued. “Every single time people told me, ‘You shouldn’t be playing high school football,’ then I went and played high school football. Then they were like, ‘You shouldn’t be playing varsity because the kids are going to be a lot bigger,’ and then I went and played varsity football, and I did something incredible.

“So, if somebody were to tell me they were going to give me an opportunity to go play college football, would it probably be pretty dangerous? Yes. Will I maybe get hurt? Most likely. But why the hell not? I would go do it. If I had the opportunity to play ”

It sounds like her mind is made up. Now the ball is in a college coach’s court to break the mold and give her another historic opportunity.

Rhett Butler is a Boxing Writer Association of America Journalist, Play-By-Play Commentator, Combat Sports Insider, and Former Mixed Martial Arts and Boxing Promoter. The New York City native honed his skills at various news outlets including but not limited to: TIME Magazine, Money Magazine, CNN's Wolf Blitzer Reports, and more. Rhett hosts the PRITTY Left Hook podcast, a polarizing combat sports insider's take featuring the world's biggest names.