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New NCAA Ruling Permits Hiring of College Student-Athletes for Promotional Activities

New NCAA Ruling Permits Hiring of College Student-Athletes for Promotional Activities

*This message was emailed from Katie Loovis to Chamber members on June 30, 2021 

Dear Chamber Members,

A new NCAA ruling allows businesses to engage with college student-athletes for commercial purposes and negotiate the use of the student’s name, image, and/or likeness (NIL) for promotional activities.

The guidance is still being determined, but effective tomorrow, July 1st, student-athletes can be compensated to promote products or services, including through television and radio advertisements, social media posts, and personal appearances.

In an effort to provide you with as much real-time clarity on the do’s and don'ts, please:

  1. Scroll down to review a letter from UNC Athletics. 
  2. Register now for The Chamber’s Briefing with UNC Athletics on Tuesday, July 13th from 12:30pm-1:30pm. 

Given the uncertainty around this new ruling, our hope is that local employers will think carefully about if/how to proceed and do so in a way that is legal, compliant, and does not jeopardize student-athlete eligibility.

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Katie R. Loovis
Vice President for External Affairs
The Chamber For a Greater Chapel Hill-Carrboro | 919-696-0781 (m)

Message to: Members of The Chamber For a Greater Chapel Hill-Carrboro

From: UNC Athletics

Date: June 30, 2021

Subject: Name, Image, and Likeness

Chapel Hill Community Member:

It is an exciting time to be a Tar Heel as we continue to enjoy the successes of our student-athletes.

As you have likely heard, the NCAA has recently adopted rules that permit a student-athlete to use his or her name, image, or likeness (NIL) in non-institutional promotional activities and to receive compensation for such activities provided the student-athlete does not receive compensation for athletics performance or participation as an inducement for enrollment. Compensation for the use of NIL may include discounts or special arrangements.

Prospective and Current Student-Athletes CAN:

  • Appear in television advertisements for commercial products or services.
  • Appear in print or social media advertisements for commercial products or services.
  • Make personal appearances to promote commercial products or services (e.g., appearance at a commercial establishment).
  • Be a social media influencer (compensation for social media activity/posting).

Prospective and Current Student-Athletes CANNOT:

  • Have an agreement without quid pro quo (e.g., compensation for work not performed).
  • Be provided or offered compensation contingent upon initial or continued enrollment at UNC.
  • Be compensated contingent upon a specific athletic performance or achievement (e.g., financial incentives based on points scored). Athletic performance may enhance a student athlete’s NIL value, but athletic performance may not be the “consideration” for NIL compensation.

With success comes a significant responsibility. A critical component of continuing our success is maintaining institutional compliance with NCAA and Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) rules and regulations. Please do not hesitate to contact me directly with any questions you have about the way NCAA rules now permit our student-athletes to partner with your business. GO HEELS!


Marielle vanGelder
Associate Athletic Director/SWA
University of North Carolina

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