13-Year-Old Soccer Player Olivia Moultrie Turns Pro, Signs Contract with Nike

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistFebruary 26, 2019

NEWCASTLE, AUSTRALIA - FEBRUARY 15: Soccer balls on the field before the game during the round 19 A-League match between the Newcastle Jets and Melbourne City at McDonald Jones Stadium on February 15, 2019 in Newcastle, Australia. (Photo by Ashley Feder/Getty Images)
Ashley Feder/Getty Images

Olivia Moultrie is only 13 years old, but she is already embarking on a career as a professional soccer player.

According to Andrew Keh of the New York Times, Moultrie signed an endorsement deal with Nike and a representation pact with Wasserman Media Group. As a result, she's no longer eligible to play collegiately, which is notable given she already made history two years ago by accepting a scholarship offer from the North Carolina Tar Heels.

Keh noted Moultrie, then 11 years old, was the youngest girls soccer player to publicly accept a scholarship offer.

"It's just a shift in women's sports," Moultrie's agent, Spencer Wadsworth, said while revealing the offer the teenager received from Nike was worth more than the four-year scholarship. "You see it more and more now where women's soccer is catching up to the men's side, and there's more opportunities for them."

Moultrie has played for the United States youth national team and boys clubs in addition to training with clubs such as Olympique Lyon, Paris Saint-Germain and Bayern Munich in Europe. 

She also appeared in Nike's recent commercial that featured the likes of Serena Williams, Alex Morgan and Diana Taurasi, among others, and aired during Sunday's Academy Awards:

Keh pointed out it is "unclear" what Moultrie will do next after forgoing the chance to play collegiately because she cannot sign with foreign clubs before she turns 18. While he deemed the likelihood of her competing as a developmental player in the United States' National Women's Soccer League "far more likely" than playing in Europe, he noted the league would have to change its rules.

As of now, players must be at least 18 years old to play in the NWSL.

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