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Auburn Football Athletes Launch Player-Driven NIL Collective

Plains NIL Club is one of the first collectives run by current student athletes.

Auburn football helmet
Jeffrey Vest/Icon Sportswire

Traditionally, name, image, and likeness, collectives are founded by boosters, fans or even alums of the athletic department. However, current Auburn football players have decided to be among the first to found their own collective, following the announcement of the East Lansing NIL Club by Michigan State athletes.

How does Plains NIL Club work?

Players on the Auburn football team have decided to start their own collective: the Plains NIL Club, one of the first athlete-run NIL collectives. According to a statement released by the players, “The Plains NIL Club… allows fans to access the players like never before.”

Plains NIL Club members will gain “access to exclusive behind-the-scenes content from all the guys on the team.” All players involved with the collective will share in the funds generated equally.

Approximately three-quarters of the Auburn football roster has partnered with YOKE, a licensing company, to “offer fans a way to engage with Tigers’ athletes throughout the season via an online membership.”

Reportedly, senior starting center Nick Brahms, sophomore running back Jarquez Hunter and freshman quarterback Holden Geriner have all signed on with Plains NIL Club. Junior linebacker Kameron Brown said Bailey O’Sullivan, a YOKE co-founder and Auburn alum, has been helping organize the group.

Should college athletes be controlling and forming their own collectives?

It is a tough call on whether students should be forming and running their own collectives. Given that Auburn is among the first to do it, and it really hasn’t started, it is too early to say whether it is a good idea or not.

From a business perspective, it’s different to have students run a collective. However, students successfully run student organizations all the time, which can provide a blueprint for success for athletes involved in the Plains NIL Club.

How Does the Plain NIL Club model compare to other Auburn collectives?

Currently, there is only one other NIL collective for Auburn, which is NIL-Auburn. Below are some points for comparison:

  • Leadership:
    • NIL-Auburn: Founded by Rick Davidson, a former college athlete turned lawyer
    • Plains NIL Club: Founded by current Auburn Football players (with help from YOKE)
  • Primary Model:
    • NIL-Auburn: Varying levels of membership for access to players and merchandise
    • Plains NIL Club: Membership-based, but it has not been specified whether there are going to be different levels of access to players and merchandise
  • Non-Profit?
    • NIL-Auburn: No
    • Plains NIL Club: No
  • Sports:
    • NIL-Auburn: supports all sports at Auburn
    • Plains NIL Club: currently, only focuses on the football team

As mentioned above, we have no information on whether Plains NIL Club will have different levels of membership or if it will eventually reach other sports. If you want to learn more about the differing levels of membership for NIL-Auburn, and all other known collectives, join our NIL Collectives Insider for access to our detailed NIL Collectives Database.

How can fans get involved?

Starting in July, the new collective is going to sell a limited number of Plains NIL Club Access Passes. The passes allow for fans to access an online-based community and in-person events during the season. Fans can get involved now through joining a waitlist on the website here.

Author

  • Madeline C. Myers is a rising third-year law student at Case Western Reserve University School of Law. Madeline received her B.A. in Political Science in January of 2022. Madeline is the Co-President of the Sports and Entertainment Law Society for this upcoming year. This is the second summer she is managing a softball team for her fellow CWRU Law peers through the local bar association. In her free time she is an avid Cleveland Browns, Cavaliers, and Guardians fan, and watches ESPN, Blue Bloods, NCIS, and CNN.

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