Kansas unveils Name, Image and Likeness program for student-athletes

Kansas Athletics formally introduced their new head coach Lance Leipold at a press conference...
Kansas Athletics formally introduced their new head coach Lance Leipold at a press conference Monday, May 3rd, 2021.
Published: Jul. 31, 2021 at 4:02 PM CDT
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LAWRENCE, Kan. (WIBW) - Kansas Athletics has debuted a new program aimed at preparing student-athletes for NIL opportunities. That program is called “Jayhawks Ascend.”

There are four main “pillars” of the program, created with the help of Athletics Director Travis Goff.

“A staple of Kansas Athletics has always been putting our student-athletes in the best position to succeed, and that is our clear intention with Jayhawks Ascend,” Travis Goff, Kansas Athletics Director, said. “With the initialization of Name, Image and Likeness and the notoriety that comes with being a student-athlete at KU, Jayhawks Ascend will elevate our student-athletes and allow them to flourish in this new day and age in college athletics. Not only will this program assist in navigating the new NIL world, this all-encompassing educational program will help our nearly 500 student-athletes continue their pursuit of a degree while also preparing them for life after KU.”

Those four pillars are:

  • Personal Brand Management
  • Name, Image and Likeness Protection
  • KU Resource Engagement
  • Post KU Prepardness

In a release provided by the University, personal brand management will focus on teaching student-athletes “basic knowledge of building their profile throughout college.” The program is said to include “social media training, one-on-one brand building, student-athlete assessments, digital reports, and brand identity training.”

KU will also partner with programs like Opendorse and INFLCAR to pair their student-athletes with business professionals for advice.

Name, Image and Likeness Protection will focus on NCAA compliance guidelines. This will teach student-athletes “basic compliance education” so their NCAA eligibility isn’t impacted while they engage in business.

The statement on the program says KU Resource Engagement will “provide free legal services to student-athletes and courses to get entrepreneurship certificates for non-business majors.”

And finally Post KU Prepardness is said to be centered “around financial literacy, tax preparation assistance, business fundamentals and professional development.”

“Our guys are in a great position to benefit off their Name, Image and Likeness, and this program will put them at the forefront in this new day of college athletics,” Men’s Basketball Head Coach Bill Self said. “Our athletic department has put countless hours and planning into this and have done a great job making this program unique to the unbelievable resources we have here at KU. I’m really looking forward to seeing our team utilize this resource to the fullest ability.”

“Jayhawks Ascend puts us in a great position to equip our student-athletes in this time of transition to Name, Image and Likeness in college athletics,” Head Football Coach Lance Leipold said. “It’s a comprehensive plan that ensures the members of our team will benefit from all of the great resources at Kansas, both during their time here and in the future. This is something we’re excited to continue to learn about and integrate into Kansas Football.”

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