Kentucky Men's Basketball Team Signs Cryptocurrency Deal with FTX US Under NIL Rules

Rob Goldberg@@TheRobGoldbergFeatured Columnist IVNovember 3, 2021

NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 05:  A general view of the Kentucky Wildcats logo during the second half of the 2019 State Farm Champions Classic  college basketball game between the Michigan State Spartans and the Kentucky Wildcats on November 5, 2019 at Madison Square Garden in New York, NY.  (Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Each player on the Kentucky men's basketball team will get paid monthly after signing an exclusive deal with FTX US:

Kyle Tucker @KyleTucker_ATH

Kentuckyโ€™s whole basketball team signed a crypto NIL deal that will pay each of them monthly. Huge for those guys and for recruiting. <a href="https://t.co/MheGhpMw1T">https://t.co/MheGhpMw1T</a> <a href="https://t.co/QSyK1aOv8m">pic.twitter.com/QSyK1aOv8m</a>

The NIL deal will allow each player to be compensated individually as an ambassador for the cryptocurrency exchange.

A change in NCAA rules earlier this year allowed student-athletes to earn money from their name, image and likeness. 

Kentucky basketball has fully embraced the new system, with head coach John Calipari saying in September he wanted his school to be the "gold standard" for NIL, per Keith Taylor of Kentucky Today.

"It is a reason they'll go somewhere else if you're not doing it right, and they will do it," Calipari said. "Every player that we brought on this campus, and we're talking about recruiting, they wanted to know, their families especially, what are you doing with name, image, and likeness? How are you trying to help, and how are you trying to protect? Every kid."

Several current players were quick to take advantage of the opportunity, either through selling merchandise at The Players Trunk or sending personalized videos on Cameo.

The latest deal not only benefits the team's biggest stars, but everyone on the roster.