LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - NOVEMBER 18: Caleb Williams #13 of the USC Trojans walks to the field for team entrances prior to a game against the UCLA Bruins at United Airlines Field at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on November 18, 2023 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Ryan Kang/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - NOVEMBER 18: Caleb Williams #13 of the USC Trojans walks to the field for team entrances prior to a game against the UCLA Bruins at United Airlines Field at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on November 18, 2023 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Ryan Kang/Getty Images)

5 of The Most-Fitting NIL Deals

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Any college athlete can partner with any brand when it comes to Name, Image, and Likeness (NIL). However, some partnerships make much more sense than others. 

Here are the top 5 best-fitting NIL deals.

Caleb Williams & Trolli

USC quarterback (QB) Caleb Williams recently partnered with Trolli and created the limited-edition “Caleb Williams Mix.” The mix included sour cherry-lemon gummy worms that represent Williams’ alma mater, The University of Southern California.

Trolli chose the Heisman winner due to his public love for the brand.

“I’ve been a fan of Trolli’s Sour Brite Crawlers ever since youth football, and fans have even caught me sneaking them in on the sidelines during games throughout my college career,” said Caleb Williams.”

The brand held a giveaway where 4,000 lucky fans received the gummies. Five individuals even received Trolli merchandise signed by Williams.

Chop Robinson & Pennsylvania Pork Chop Council

Another NIL deal involving a brand that couldn’t have picked a better representative is Penn State defensive end Demeioun “Chop” Robinson’s deal with the Pennsylvania Pork Production Council. Robinson participated in several social media posts and other promotions with the brand.

When Robinson was born, he was such a large baby that his family started calling him “Pork Chop.” According to Sports Illustrated, Robinson weighed in at 14 pounds and his family described him as a “big kid with ‘no neck.’” 

“My parents started calling me Pork Chop early on and it stuck! Since then, I grew taller and thinned out, but Chop stuck,” Robinson said.

The nickname undoubtedly turned out to be a perfect fit.

J.J. McCarthy & Bob Marley: One Love

Michigan QB J.J. McCarthy recently endorsed a new movie out in theaters, “Bob Marley: One Love.” 

Bob Marley’s relaxed style and influential lyrics go hand-in-hand with McCarthy’s interests. The Wolverine has publicly stated his love for meditation several times. He has also shared how it has helped him through tough times.

Aside from that, McCarthy is also interested in social justice. Many of his social media posts include quotes from influential individuals, demonstrating how important peace and freedom are to him.

Raheim Sanders & Huggies

The most heartwarming NIL deal, by far, belongs to former Arkansas running back Raheim Sanders and his partnership with Huggies

Sanders became a father in 2021 to his son, Raheim Jr., so he is more than familiar with the world of babies and diapers.

For the past year, the running back has partnered with Huggies to promote their product and donate to parents in need of diapers and other resources for their children.

Sanders announced he is officially transferring to South Carolina for his senior year making him the only individual on this list who is hanging around for one more year. Who knows what else he will do with the brand in the meantime?

Kool-Aid McKinstry & Kool-Aid

Probably the oldest deal on the list is Alabama cornerback Kool-Aid McKinstry’s partnership with the popular drink brand of the same name.

In August of 2021, GaQuincy “Kool-Aid” McKinstry partnered with Kool-Aid. Like Demeioun Robinson, McKinstry says he has had the nickname since he was a baby

“‘Look at this boy with this big Kool-Aid smile on his face,’” his grandma said right after he was born. 

Now. McKinstry is well-known by this nickname and it has clearly benefited him.

Victoria Jonach is an aspiring writer and media analyst fascinated by what kinds of activities players participate in off the football field. Growing up in New Jersey, she is a New York Giants fan and attends Rutgers University, pursuing a career in Journalism and Media Studies. She writes for FirstRoundMock.com covering anticipated draft picks and their acts of volunteerism, entrepreneurship, and other interests that shape these individuals.

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