Why NIL hasn’t been all bad for college football

Syndication: Detroit Free Press
Syndication: Detroit Free Press /

Some college football fans despise NIL and we know a lot of coaches do too, but here’s one stat that shows it can be a good thing for the sport. 

NIL is part of the college football landscape now and it’s not something that’s going to go away. College football fans and head coaches need to accept it and deal with it.

For the most part, they have. The transfer portal window is crazier now and recruiting is wilder than it’s ever been before.

Some college football teams are abusing NIL and using it as a pay-for-play tool when that’s not the design and teams are also poaching players from others and using NIL as a way of putting a financial incentive on that — such as with Jordan Addison.

However, NIL doesn’t have to be a bad thing. In fact, it’s had a positive impact on college football in one aspect and that’s fewer players declaring for the NFL Draft.

In recent years, we have seen the number of early entrants into the draft rise. We have also seen a bunch of those players who wind up going undrafted over the years and are stuck with no option but to try and make it in the NFL.

Surely, there is some bad advice going around. Also, the draft is a risky business and nobody knows for sure who is going to go where. But leading up to the 2023 NFL draft, early entrants are down by 36 percent.

A positive impact of NIL on college football

That includes some really prominent players such as Michigan running back Blake Corum, who was enticed to stay at Michigan for another year, in part, by the lure of a $1 million NIL deal. Some of his teammates have done the same — all guys that would have been drafted.

We have seen this happening with college basketball and it’s a good thing for players. If they aren’t ready to go to the NFL, they don’t have to make choice solely based on money.

Many top players can earn seven figures playing college football and that’s definitely a reason why the early entrant numbers are on the decline, which is also a good thing for fans.

Next. Ranking College Football's top 25 fanbases. dark

Better players mean a higher quality of college football and NIL is one reason why some really good players are deciding to stick around instead of seizing the first chance to turn pro.