One of the top 20 MaxPreps stories of the past school year was how name, image and likeness has trickled down to the high school level
. On Monday it was announced that the St. John Bosco (Bellflower, Calif.)
football players had entered into what's believed to be the first team-wide NIL deal at the prep level.
The school, which sent out a clarification statement late Monday, said it was not part of the NIL agreement, nor did it receive revenue from the partnership.
The deal announced Monday was with KONGiQ, a sports performance and technology company, according to a press release distributed by the school. The Southern California football program also is a client, reportedly using its product in its weight room.
California law prevents school administration from brokering the deal as
well as student-athletes using the school's uniform to promote an NIL
venture. The clarification statement said KONGiQ entered into agreements with individual players and not on behalf of St. John Bosco or its football program.
In all, 70 players have signed on to endorse the company. But unlike some college NIL deals, the money Bosco players will receive for social media posts wearing the company's shirts isn't life-changing money. Payouts are believed to be in the hundreds of dollars, according to media reports.
"As a high school football coach, this is just another layer of information I'm going to have to learn and be knowledgeable in to be able to educate our young men as they come through," Braves head coach Jason Negro told Football Scoop.
The news breaks as the Braves are preparing for a season-opening trip to Texas for a game against perennial Lone Star State power Allen
, alma mater of the Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray.
"Not one parent has reached out to us with concerns or questions as to what this is about. The way they're approaching it is that it's a small job," Bosco head coach Jason Negro told USA Today. "The kids are being paid for a service to be an influencer and talk about it in a positive light. They're not getting rich off it, but this isn't a gimmick. It's basic and straightforward."
Seventeen states already allow their student-athletes to participate in NIL. However, football hotbeds Texas, Florida and Georgia have yet to allow it.
The NIL issue in college has changed the landscape for many student-athletes and as it seeps down to prep sports, some believe it's good to educate players about its potential and pitfalls.
Many of Bosco's stars, including Matayo Uiagalelei
, DeAndre Moore
and quarterback Pierce Clarkson
, are committed to major college programs where the NIL potential is far-greater.
"Just as an example, we're implementing a financial literacy course to help them deal with that and understand how to manage money and things like that," Negro said.