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Denny’s has signed four NIL deals with college football offensive linemen to join its “All-Pancaker Team.”

Sep 07 2021

Denny’s has signed four NIL deals with college football offensive linemen to join its “All-Pancaker Team.” The breakfast chain is putting a playful touch on NIL deals, playing on pancakes and pancake blocks—a strategy often used by offensive linemen—to celebrate the “unsung” players in a unique (and fitting) way. Denny’s has signed University of Southern California’s Jalen McKenzie, University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff’s Mark Evans II, Ohio State University’s Nicholas Petit-Frere, and Clemson’s Tristan Leigh, who will all participate in brand initiatives, star in a Signing Day video, and post social content. Denny’s is compensating the players with all-you-can eat buttermilk pancakes. As the NIL space heats up (brands from Degree to Fanatics Inc. have been partnering with college athletes following the NCAA’s ruling to allow student sports stars to profit off their name, image, and likeness), colleges have started turning to influencer agencies to navigate deals in hopes of helping their players score partnerships. YPulse’s Scouting Next Gen Sports Fans trend data shows 63% of 13-39-year-olds consider themselves sports fans, and partnering with young athletes could be a boon for brands to authentically engage with them and show their support for the athletes. (Marketing Dive, AdAge)