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How Oklahoma State’s Brand Squad is Engaging Marketing Students in NIL

Getting non-athletes involved in NIL

Maribeth Kuzmeski on the Business of College Sports podcast talking about Oklahoma State's The Brand Squad

Last Updated on February 23, 2022

There is so much creativity and innovation happening in the NIL space right now, and Oklahoma State’s The Brand Squad is a terrific example.

If you aren’t on a campus, you might not realize the level of interest non-athlete students have in being part of NIL. I’ve heard from law students, accounting students, PR students and all sorts of other students on campus who are trying to help their student athlete friends or siblings.

Well, at Oklahoma State, they’ve found a creative way to allow their marketing students to get hands-on experience in a way that benefits their student athletes. 

Today, I have Dr. Maribeth Kuzmeski on the podcast to tell us all about The Brand Squad she created in Stillwater. Through this innovative program, marketing students are getting certified to work with student athletes who opt in to get additional help with personal branding, working with brands and more.

We chat about:

  • How the The Brand Squad was formed
  • The training The Brand Squad goes through
  • The ways The Brand Squad is working with student athletes
  • How other schools could implement this idea
  • Her new NIL textbook and courseware

Dr. Maribeth Kuzmeski is a professor in the Spears School of Business at Oklahoma State University. She teaches marketing including Personal Branding: Name Image & Likeness. Maribeth is also the President of Red Zone Marketing, an award-winning marketing consulting firm with clients throughout the United States. 

Maribeth started The Brand Squad at Oklahoma State, a select group of business students who have been trained and certified to assist student athletes with their NIL efforts. She also has a unique perspective and understanding of student athletes as her son played D1 hockey, nephew just signed to play football at Wisconsin, and she has nieces playing D1 volleyball and soccer. Maribeth has a bachelor’s degree from the Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University, an MBA from The George Washington University, and a PhD in Business Administration from Oklahoma State University. 

Here links to some of the things we mentioned in the episode:

Textbook and Courseware:

The Brand Squad:

Maribeth’s marketing agency:

Connect with Maribeth:

You can listen below or click the Subscribe button at the end of this post to be taken to your favorite podcast app to listen.

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Listen to more episodes of the Business of College Sports podcast here.

Abridged Transcript

Transcript coming soon!


  • Kristi Dosh

    Kristi A. Dosh is the founder of and has served as a sports business analyst and contributor for outlets such as Forbes, ESPN, SportsBusiness Journal, Bleacher Report, SB Nation and more. She is also the author of a book on the business of college football, Saturday Millionaires. Kristi is a sought-after consultant and speaker on topics related to the business of college sports and a former practicing attorney. Click to learn more

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