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Penn State NIL Collective Lions Legacy Club Inks Massive Deal

Photo by Penn State Athletics: James Franklin

Name, Image and Likeness has been a big topic amongst Penn State sports fans, and the university has received more than a little scrutiny for its NIL efforts.

Well, Thursday, April 13, 2023, is a good day for fans who are concerned about the school’s lack of progress.

April 13 was the day Penn State’s football-specific NIL collective, Lions Legacy Club, announced that it had reached a two-year commitment from West Shore Homes and MITER Brands.

The exact figure hasn’t been released yet, but Mark Brennan of 247Sports reported that sources indicated the deal is worth millions of dollars. Lions Legacy Club said in a release that this partnership is “the first NIL deal of its kind at Penn State.”

The release also said that Shore Homes and MITER Brands plan on tapping into “new and creative opportunities with Penn State football student-athletes.”

“This includes game-day activities, student-athlete brand unveils, philantropic initiatives, job site apparences, client visits and multiple advertising  formats around the region.”

Both Shore Homes and MITER Brands are run by Penn State alumn. B.J. Werzyn is West Shore’s president and Matt DeSoto is MITER’s CEO. West Shore has a deal with star Penn State running back Nick Singleton, which it landed last year.

Since NIL first took the college sports world by storm in 2021, Penn State’s initiative has been called into question. Over the past month, in particular, the school has received plenty of criticism due primarily to basketball cosch Micah Shrewsberry leaving for Notre Dame.

After the last Tuesday practice of this spring football season earlier this week, coach James Franklin said that NIL played a part in Shrewsberry’s departure.

“I think we obviously just saw some decisions that weren’t completely made in the basketball program, but that (NIL) was a big part of it,” Franklin said. “We know that.”

As far as football goes, Franklin said Penn State’s progressing in NIL, but is still “two years behind everybody else.”

“I think over the last year, we’ve made significant progress,” Franklin said. “But if you give somebody a two-year head start in a basically three-year model, I think it’s (the result) pretty obvious.

“We’ve still got a ton of work to do,” Franklin said. “We started out that first couple years where we said we were going to teach student-athletes how to be entrepreneurs. That was our NIL model.”


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