Crocs has long been a major player in the NIL space.
The casual footwear company’s 2023 NIL roster featured well-known college athletes like Armando Bacot, Deja Kelly and Suni Lee. Plus, it’s also executed deals in the past with UConn All-American Paige Bueckers. And Crocs’ recent deal with Michigan standout Roman Wilson was even more impactful after the Wolverines’ run to the national championship.
Now the footwear that’s popular with athletes to wear before and after games returns to the market with its 2024 NIL roster. The roster features six athletes, including well-known names like Duke guard Jared McCain, Indiana forward Mackenzie Mgbako and Utah gymnast Grace McCallum.
“As a brand that’s not afraid to push boundaries, Crocs has chosen six athletes who are not only authentic brand fans but also push themselves to the limit inside and outside of their sport,” Crocs said in a statement to On3.
“Both Crocs and its newest NIL partners understand that to perform your best, rest and recovery are as important as training. Each athlete will partner with the brand to create customized social content that highlights what it means to give it your all on and off the court all season long.”
Jared McCain has significant NIL brand
Jared McCain became a household name long before he arrived in college thanks to his large social media presence. And the newest deal with Crocs is an extension of a previous partnership.
McCain carefully crafted a strong brand with more than 2 million followers on TikTok before the start of his senior year of high school. He was also one of the early success stories with NIL, announcing deals with Lemon Perfect and Champs Sports and even having his own pair of Crocs.
In his freshman season, McCain is averaging 11 points and five rebounds, and he’s coming off a 23-point performance against North Carolina.
With the success on and off the court, McCain has a massive On3 NIL Valuation of $1.1 million. That figure is No. 19 in the On3 NIL 100, the first of its kind and defacto NIL ranking of the top 100 high school and college athletes ranked by their On3 NIL Valuation.
The On3 NIL Valuation is calculated by combining roster value and personal NIL. Roster value is the value an athlete has by being a member of his or her team at his or her school, which factors into the role of NIL collectives. NIL in an athlete’s name, image and likeness and the value it could bring to regional and national brands outside of the scope of NIL collectives.
Mackenzie Mgbako another rising star
Just like McCain, Mackenzie Mgbako is one of the top young stars in college basketball.
Mgbako, a former five-star recruit, averages 15 points and two rebounds for the Hoosiers. Additionally, he’s building an impressive NIL brand with more than 50,000 followers on social media. His post promoting the NIL deal with Crocs generated nearly 5,700 likes alone.
The combination of playing for a top school like Indiana with a good roster value and his personal NIL success is why he has an On3 NIL Valuation of $345,000.
Women athletes represented in Crocs NIL deal
Crocs prides itself also with its NIL deal with successful female college athletes. And that’s showcased perfectly with the new NIL class featuring Janiah Barker and Grace McCallum.
Barker is averaging 11.3 points, eight rebounds and 1.3 assists for the 15-6 Texas A&M women’s basketball team. Barker, a sophomore, was one of the nation’s top women’s basketball recruits in the 2022 class and is the highest-rated prospect to ever sign with the Aggies.
McCallum is one of the most decorated gymnasts in the world.
She won a silver medal in the 2020 Olympics with Team USA and is striving to return to the team in 2024 after recovering from a knee injury that kept her out most of the 2023 college season at Utah. Her success with Team USA helped her build an extensive NIL resume with household brands such as Kellogg’s Frosted Flakes, H&R Block, Amazon Fashion, Dick’s Sporting Goods and many others. Her valuation – boosted by her personal NIL success – is $154,000, which ranks No. 5 in college gymnastics.