Wednesday September 27, 2023
The Best Employers in Sports Survey is Now Open!

Inside The Huddle: Brands, Athletes, and Equity Deals with Ricky Medina

Front Office Sports Today

Writer’s Strike End a Boon for Sports Networks, Agencies

We delve into the potential long-term impact of the five-month strike.
Listen Now
September 26, 2023 | Podcast
Copy Link
Link Copied
Link Copied

In the buildup to Front Office Sports’ Brand Marketing Huddle at the LA Stadium Premiere Center on July 11, we’re introducing you to the huddle leaders who will be lending their expertise to the conversation.

Today, meet Ricky Medina: Senior Manager of Licensing and Business Development with the NFL Players Association. In this role, Medina leads negotiations for new licensing deals & partnerships while representing the intellectual property for a group player licensing program for all current NFL players.

Growing up in northern New Jersey, Medina’s love for sports started early as a fan of New York’s professional teams. Now 13 years into his career, Medina still holds that passion close.

Medina also works closely with REP Worldwide: the NFLPA’s subsidiary licensing representation business launched in partnership with the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team Players Association (USWNTPA) and the Women’s National Basketball Players Association (WNBPA). He describes this as one of his proudest professional achievements.

“It’s really hard to do it justice and put into words,” Medina says, “but working in partnership and on behalf of world-class female athletes that have either largely been overlooked historically or haven’t had the resources (because they’ve been overlooked) to properly monetize their influence and achievements has been inspiring, and is something I’m not only proud of but – and this cannot be overstated – is a responsibility that has tentacles beyond the bounds of sports into important societal issues.”

Working in a role that sees him frequently observing, how brands and athletes establish working relationships, Medina says the biggest key for either to find success is authenticity. 

“It’s becoming more and more common for athletes and brands to have an expectation of how they can be an extension of one another – the values they hold, the common interests they share,” Medina states. “One of my colleagues, Terése Whitehead always tells me – that athletes nowadays are looking for brands that can extend their own personal brand. In most cases it can no longer be a purely transactional relationship whereby the brand is simply paying an athlete to hold a product and tell the customer to buy it. That’s partially a byproduct of a shift in consumer behavior, but it’s also what brands and athletes are demanding of one another.”

Medina’s advice to students looking to start their careers in sports is to to simply get as much experience as possible and take advantage of every opportunity.

“The advice I’d offer up is to do everything possible to get your foot in the door,” he says. “Don’t concern yourself with the specific role – internship, entry level, volunteer work.  Whatever it is, whatever it takes – if you’re passionate enough about it and want it badly enough, there is a path to gain experience and exposure. Once you do get that foot in the door, work like there’s no tomorrow, be present and develop relationships.  Schedule coffee or lunch meetings with people you want to learn from – you may be surprised with how generous folks are with their time when it comes to mentoring.”

Meet Ricky and hear more of his thoughts on the current brand marketing space at the Front Office Sports Brand Marketing Huddle at the LA Stadium Premiere Center in Los Angeles, CA on July 11. For tickets and additional info, click here.

Copy Link
Link Copied
Link Copied

What to Read

Deion Sanders with The Rock on ESPN's "College GameDay."

Deion Sanders Generated $45M In Earned Media For Colorado

From Sept.1-22, Sanders generated $45.7M for the public university.
Fanatics is buying auction marketplace PWCC.

Fanatics Nabbing WWE Rights In Latest Win Over Panini

Fanatics will take over WWE's trading card rights.

Latest NFL-NFLPA Drama Spotlights Fake Injury Accusations

The NFL has alleged that the NFLPA told running backs to fake injuries.

Eli Manning: Keep MetLife Field Turf

Eli Manning feels that MetLife Stadium should keep its artificial turf field.
podcast thumbnail mobile
Front Office Sports Today

Writer’s Strike End a Boon for Sports Networks, Agencies


Featured Today

NFL's Swift Mania Starting To Show Impact Through Merch Sales, Viewership

Taylor Swift stole the NFL's spotlight by attending Sunday's Chiefs game.
First Take vs. FS1
September 26, 2023

Sharpe: 'First Take' Would Still Beat 'Undisputed' Without Stephen A.

Even if Smith leaves, Sharpe said he will still beat Skip Bayless in the ratings.
September 25, 2023

Oakland-MLB Relationship Devolves Into Next-Level Toxicity

Commissioner, mayor have very different accounts of July meeting
Jacksonville Jaguars Team President Mark Lamping addressed community members at Strings Sports Brewery on Main Street for the first of 14 planned town hall sessions to present the team's plans for the new "stadium of the future" complex and address the public concerns.
September 25, 2023

Jacksonville Jaguars President Walks Back Stadium ‘Threat’

"Viewing those comments as a threat to leave Jacksonville isn't correct."


Powered By

Careers in Sports

Looking for a new job? Check out these featured listings and search for openings all over the world.
Chicago Cubs
New York
Tri Star Sports and Entertainment Group, Inc.
USA - Multiple Locations
Drew Brees smiling while wearing hat

Drew Brees, PointsBet Pull Off Elaborate Lightning Publicity Stunt

The video racked up over 2 million views in about 12 hours.
September 16, 2022

NBA Legend Scottie Pippen Latest Celebrity To Endorse LIV Golf

The former Chicago Bull is part of LIV's celebrity marketing campaign.
al michaels and kirk hergstreit
September 15, 2022

Amazon's Advertising Blitz Ahead Of First 'Thursday Night Football'

'Thursday Night Football' has launched massive marketing takeover ahead of Chiefs-Chargers.
June 21, 2022

NBA Finals Broke Records on Social Media

The NBA closed out the season with a bang on social media, eclipsing 2 billion video plays for a 19% increase over last year.
June 21, 2022

Gallo Winery Could Be New Player For Super Bowl Spots

Anheuser-Busch is giving up Super Bowl alcohol exclusivity for first in decades. NFL sponsor E. & J. Gallo Winery might step up with own commercials in the Big Game.
June 13, 2022

NBA's Latest Floating Court Hits London's River Thames

Hennessy continued their global initiative with the NBA by creating a floating court in the River Thames.
June 13, 2022

Steph Curry Is NBA's Social Media King

Steph Curry isn't only dominating on the court, he's become the king of the NBA's social and digital push.
June 7, 2022

The NBA Continues to Dominate the Social Media Space

The NBA seemingly capitalizes in the digital and social space more than most leagues. Here's some of the data from the Finals.