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Monday, June 24, 2024

Boise State’s Athlete-Friendly Approach to Trading Cards

  • On Wednesday, Boise State football released a trading card program including every team member.
  • Athletes will get paid for all the cards manufactured, regardless of how many actually sell.
Boise State Athletics

Athletic departments nationwide have begun to manufacture trading cards with the help of NIL rules. But while most agreements implement a royalty-based pay structure, one school is taking a different — and potentially athlete-friendly — approach.

On Wednesday, Boise State football released a trading card program featuring every member of the team. The program, created in part with LEARFIELD’s licensing services, will be distributed through an agreement with local business Jacksons Food Stores. 

In traditional group licensing deals, athletes get a percentage of every item sold. But Jacksons fronted the cost of more than 10,000 trading cards — the minimum amount required by the supplier, President Cory Jackson told Front Office Sports. 

As a result, athletes will get paid for all the cards manufactured, regardless of how many actually sell. 

The cards will be sold in packs of 14. Ten prominent players will receive an extra cut for specialized cards featuring autographs.

While Boise State declined to disclose how much athletes will earn specifically, they did note the fees are about ten times as high as those of Collegiate Licensing Company.

Michael Walsh, who runs Boise State’s NIL strategy, told Front Office Sports the program is “licensing in its truest form.” He added that “Jacksons sees the value in Boise State student-athletes and they are making an investment in that value without hedging,”

The company is prepared to continue that investment. If the cards sell out, Jackson said, its prepared to order another batch.

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