LEARFIELD, an intercollegiate media and technology services company, has entered a multi-year partnership with NFT technology platform RECUR, which is set to launch a collegiate NFT experience, NFTU.com later this month.

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RECUR will also use collegiate licensing company CLC’s COMPASS NIL deal management and disclosure platform to manage individual student-athlete opt-ins, making it possible for players’ names, images and likenesses to be available in NFT form on NFTU.com, which is set to go live on March 14.

Why we care. We’ve seen how big brands like Denny’s have leveraged the new student-athlete NIL agreements to bring attention to under-recognized players and use their platform to integrate a compelling sports narrative into their menu offerings and deals. This is a great example of a mass-market approach to NILs, and of a brand doing justice to both sides of the student-athlete balance.

There is also the core college sports fan served by LEARFIELD and NFTU.com – a fan that digs deep into college sports or is the alum or current student at a particular school. The NFTU.com platform aims at personalizing this experience with individual players at scale through the COMPASS disclosure system, making this a workable tech solution for a 21st century sports marketing opportunity.

Digital athletics experience. LEARFIELD is an omnichannel hub for marketers and college sports fans, providing content as well as commerce. They provide traditional publishing, ticket sales, venue technology, social media marketing and analytics, among other services for college athletics.

NFTs could very well be the digital version of college memorabilia, at least as they’re described by those in the industry. Both NFTs and college gear are sources of identification and personal pride to the collector, and mean little to those on the outside looking in. The rarity is part of the appeal.

Read next: What does the Metaverse mean to marketers and consumers?

Partner universities. Schools who use RECUR and LEARFIELD to open up their NFT shops will gain access to, according to a company release:

● Commemorative NFT tickets and packages through ticketing service Paciolan 

● Integration of NFTU.com, the collegiate NFT marketplace, into official athletic websites and apps built by SIDEARM Sports 

● Licensing administration and management through CLC 

● NFT category-specific college sports marketing sponsorship with LEARFIELD partner institutions 

● Product development, asset creation, and brand-sponsorable NFT offerings from LEARFIELD

RECUR is a blockchain-agnostic NFT platform, meaning that it doesn’t tie collectors or university partners to a specific chain like Ethereum when the NFTs are minted.

About The Author

Chris Wood draws on over 15 years of reporting experience as a B2B editor and journalist. At DMN, he served as associate editor, offering original analysis on the evolving marketing tech landscape. He has interviewed leaders in tech and policy, from Canva CEO Melanie Perkins, to former Cisco CEO John Chambers, and Vivek Kundra, appointed by Barack Obama as the country’s first federal CIO. He is especially interested in how new technologies, including voice and blockchain, are disrupting the marketing world as we know it. In 2019, he moderated a panel on “innovation theater” at Fintech Inn, in Vilnius. In addition to his marketing-focused reporting in industry trades like Robotics Trends, Modern Brewery Age and AdNation News, Wood has also written for KIRKUS, and contributes fiction, criticism and poetry to several leading book blogs. He studied English at Fairfield University, and was born in Springfield, Massachusetts. He lives in New York.

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