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College football’s offseason has been all about name, image and image (NIL) deals and tit-for-tats in the major conferences in the sport.
Alabama’s Nick Saban, Texas A&M’s Jimbo Fisher and Jackson State’s Dion Sanders were all confused about the impact on NIL recruiting when USC and UCLA made the shocking decision to announce their intentions to move from the Pac-12 Conference to the Big Ten Conference.
NIL deals and additional pay for college athletes are relatively new, but athletes have been raising money for a long time. Alabama’s Bryce Young signed with a local BMW dealership, Texas running back Bijan Robinson inked a deal with Lamborghini, and USC transfer Caleb Williams got a deal with Fanatics Real and Beats by Dre after joining the Trojans.
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Tim Tebow was one of college football’s biggest stars from 2006 to 2009. He led the Gators to a national championship in 2008. He became the champion in 2006 as a freshman. Tebow was awarded the Heisman Trophy in 2007.
Last year, Tebow partnered with Pure Juice to become the company’s national brand ambassador. Pure Juice has announced that Tebow’s first franchise will open in Florida next month. In a recent interview with Fox News Digital, he told Fox News Digital that it was difficult to say whether he would be heavily involved with NIL during his collegiate career, but that there should be “guards” in place.
“I think it’s very difficult to give a hypothetical answer,” Tebow said. “It’s very different, isn’t it? I think Neil’s class is great. You can see a lot of supported athletes. I also think it’s important for teams and coaches to develop defensive strategies. To understand what everyone does and doesn’t do.
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“I think I still have a lot to do. I think it’s hard to answer that [hypothetical]But if you have the opportunity to collaborate with such wonderful people, it can be great.
The NCAA adopted its interim NIL policy in June 2021, days after the Supreme Court unanimously ruled that the organization was violating antitrust laws while paying student-athletes.
Tebow said he wasn’t surprised by how quickly Neal took it.
“I thought when people were talking about it, I thought it was going to take off very quickly in some ways, and in some ways people are going to realize it. I think there’s still a long way to go,” Tebow told Fox News Digital.
“I think this is really important. And it’s not just for conferences. I hope they do the right thing for the players and the right thing for the game. And I hope those come first.”
Texas and Oklahoma decided to move to the SEC before USC and UCLA decided to move to the Big Ten. Additionally, Charlotte, Florida Atlantic, North Texas, Rice, UAB and UTSA move from Conference USA to the American Athletic Conference while Marshall, Old Dominion and Southern Miss head to the Sun Belt.
The NCAA sent Tennessee a notice detailing violations under former head coach Jeremy Pritt.
Tebow predicted that college football would eventually consist of three conferences.
“I still think in my head and in my heart it will be at least three. I think it would have been very difficult to get just two. I think there are a lot of good teams and they should be a part of it. I hope so. It’s huge across the country,” Tebow said.
“I mean, what’s the ACC going to do? They’re going to have an ACC West Coast League? What’s going to happen with all the teams in the Big 12, right? You’ve got the growing SEC, but, you know, a lot has to happen. There’s a lot of speculation. And I’ll be honest. In fact, I don’t think many people are making decisions right now that even know what’s going to happen.
Alabama is definitely considered the favorite to win the national championship year in and year out. But Tebow said they have one of the best teams in college football this year. What’s more, he went ahead and decided that the Crimson Tide would host the Cup in January 2023.
“If I had to guess right now, I’d probably go close to ‘Bama. They’re very talented. Literally, probably the best offensive player and the best defensive player on their team,” Tebow said. “They did a great job in the pass rush, got another running back, two more receivers. Their secondary is going to be great. Plus, on the other side of Will Anderson, you’ve got pass rushers on both ends. That’s really good. Good team.”
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“And I think Georgia, Ohio State are all going to be really good. If Texas A&M can figure out the quarterback position, I think they’re going to be really good. There’s a lot of teams competing. I think it’s one of the biggest. Things are looking up for ‘Bama. Can they handle the SEC move? It’s going to be an amazing season.