In the ever-changing world of Name, Image, and Likeness (NIL), if you aren’t adapting and evolving, you’re falling behind. Oklahoma, who is building into one of the big players in the NIL game, announced another evolution to their approach in one of college football’s newest focuses.
According to a press release from the University of Oklahoma, the OU Athletic Department is launching a first-of-its-kind Athlete Services Division (ASD) that will build upon its existing NIL infrastructure by investing in more personalized resources for student-athletes.
“At OU, our student-athletes come first,” OU AD Joe Castiglione said in the release. “Our new Athlete Services Division builds upon our NIL program, taking us beyond merely supporting our student-athletes in their pursuit to benefit from their own NIL to a state where they have access to comprehensive educational services and resources. OU Athletics is the flagship brand to drive distinct value for student-athletes. By creating the opportunity for them to pair their personal brand with the power of OU’s legacy, we pave the way to lifelong success. The Athlete Services Division will fortify us in our efforts to do just that, while also continuing to position OU as a trailblazer in all of college athletics.”
In order to ensure that the new division runs smoothly, Oklahoma is integrating a range of new specialized roles, with an Altius executive general manager overseeing and implementing current and future strategic initiatives related to OU student-athlete NIL.
Toby Baldwin, OU’s Executive Associate Athletics Director for NIL and Operational Advancement as of 2022, will coordinate the division’s athlete-facing education, advocacy, and transactional services.
Here’s a quick glance at how Oklahoma plans to optimize its new venture in NIL, courtesy of OU.
OU Athletics Athlete Services Division
- A Team Approach: Departmental unit of multiple experienced professionals dedicated to supporting athletes and identifying how to diversify and optimize athlete revenue opportunities
- Specialization: Targeted roles focused on overall strategic alignment, athlete education and support, and athlete revenue optimization
- Adaptability: Designed to expand and adapt as necessary to effectively serve the evolving needs of student-athletes amidst an ever-changing collegiate sports landscape
- Combined Forces: Altius’ national perspective combined with the local expertise of OU’s staff provides for an informed and centralized strategy to position student-athletes for success
“Through this new division, we stay committed to remaining agile in the ever-evolving collegiate sports landscape,” Castiglione said. “We are fully prepared to expand and adapt as necessary so we can best serve our student-athletes.”