Caitlin Clark, Juju Watkins use NCAA Tournament stage to expand NIL brands

On3 imageby:Jeremy Crabtree03/25/24

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Iowa superstar Caitlin Clark and USC standout Juju Watkins were everywhere this weekend during coverage of both the men’s and women’s NCAA Tournament.

Both Clark and Watkins used the national stage – and their massive appeal to brands and fans – to reveal new NIL deals and new commercials.

As part of her existing partnership, Clark starred in a new commercial from State Farm. Called “Covering Greatness,” the 30-second spot debuted last Friday night and will air throughout the remainder of March Madness.

Clark then appeared in a new Xfinity commercial where she shared screen time with another Caitlin Clark. However, this Clark is a city planner from Phoenix, and she doesn’t quite have the same basketball skills.

The video was a viral hit, especially when the other Caitlin Clark’s husband tweeted out the video. It’s been viewed more than 2.4 million times and liked 18,000 times on X alone.

Juju Watkins adds deals with big brands

Juju Watkins – the superstar freshman who just passed Cheryl Miller for the single-season USC scoring record – appeared in a newly revealed commercial from AT&T. Plus, she announced impressive new partnerships with SpotifyEstée Lauder and Instagram. The deals added to her NIL resume over the last few weeks featuring top brands like NerdWalletMorgan & MorgonPoppi and Dove.

“This is a perfect execution by both Caitlin and Juju’s teams,” a rival NIL agent said about Clark’s Excel Sports Management team and Watkin’s reps representatives at Klutch Sports Group.

“You have the marquee players in all of college basketball and the perfect stage to put together national-level campaigns, and they’ve knocked it out of the park. Think it’s very safe to say that the brands are very happy with the ROI and eyeballs they got from the exposure. Now they just need to keep winning.”

Final home game for Caitlin Clark

Both Iowa and USC play Monday in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. The Hawkeyes and Trojans are No. 1 seeds in their regions, meaning we’ll probably see a lot more of Caitlin Clark and Juju Watkins in March.

Monday will be Clark’s final home game at Carver-Hawkeye Arena when Iowa hosts West Virginia in the second round. The all-time leading scorer in college basketball history talked with the HawkeyeReport about her best memories playing at home.

“I feel like it really hasn’t hit me at all,” Clark said. “I think that it’s just that I’m so locked in and excited for this game. As a competitor, you really don’t have the time and the emotion to think about that. I think it’ll hit me when the final buzzer sounds or when our season ends at whatever point that is… This is my last time, so we have to go out on a high note.”