Syracuse Orange faces challenges, can compete on NIL in ACC – experts

Syracuse basketball (Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports)
Syracuse basketball (Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Top commercial collectives have huge NIL funds

Belzer, though, did say on more than one occasion during our chat that he believes the Syracuse Orange “absolutely” can compete in the ACC on NIL.

He cited the ‘Cuse having a wealthy alumni base, a passionate fan base, and a strong business base. Syracuse University is a prestigious institution and also isn’t heavily competing for NIL dollars with other large academic institutions in its geographic area, Belzer says.

From a “potential standpoint,” he says that the Syracuse Orange has as much opportunity, if not more, to have a successful NIL program, in comparison to other ACC schools.

The challenge for SU is that it “doesn’t fully have the infrastructure in place now, but I believe it will come,” Belzer says.

Since NIL involves money, I assume that my fellow Syracuse Orange fans are curious about what dollar amounts can go into name, image and likeness initiatives.

Speaking generally, Belzer says in men’s basketball for example, the top commercial collectives can pay $100,000 annually on average to the top players, while nonprofits can only pay $30,000 to $35,000 per year.

For commercial collectives at Power Five schools that are supporting all sports, the median annual budget is about $3 million.

In men’s basketball, a top-30 program’s commercial collective has an annual budget of around $1 million. The top-tier commercial collectives, in men’s basketball, could have median annual budgets approaching $3 million.

The average NIL income for a Football Bowl Subdivision (“FBS”) player is $15,000 a year, while in men’s basketball, it is $35,000 to $40,000 per year.

Collegiate athletics, for better or for worse depending on who you talk to, have changed forever due to NIL, the transfer portal, and other factors.

The Syracuse Orange faces challenges and still has work to do, but the potential for the ‘Cuse to succeed in the NIL arena appears to be there.

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