In the continuation of a trend of NIL collectives that embrace philanthropy, a collective named Jackets for Atlanthropy that’s designed to support Georgia Tech athletes went one step further and put part of the word in its name. The Board of Directors includes Georgia Tech alum Bo Stapler, former running back Dorsey Levens, former women’s basketball player Niesha Butler, former cheer captain Jim McLaughlin and former cheerleader Chelsea Dixon.
Jackets for Atlanthropy is one of three NIL collectives or membership-based communities created to support the Yellow Jackets.
The other two are Swarm the ATL and the YOKE-backed Jackets NIL Club, where every football player on the team can opt in to share revenue from the club equally. East Lansing NIL Club, the first of this type to launch, will share 75 percent of the revenue with the players, according to right guard Matt Carrick.
What are NIL collectives?
NIL collectives are groups typically launched by fans of a specific school that pool contributions, which are then paid to athletes in exchange for NIL-related services, such as social media posts or public appearances. A collective can be a catch-all term for various groups that are designed to promote NIL opportunities for athletes at a specific school, or even a specific athletic program. Some collectives are registered as an LLC while other have filed for non-profit status.
Some collectives, such as Jackets for Atlanthropy, have incorporated a charitable or community service element.
“I think one thing that is definitely a point of emphasis is they’re not being paid to volunteer,” Stapler told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “They’re being paid for their name, image and likeness and their ability to draw volunteers, which is the benefit to the charity.”
Collectives are most common at the Power Five level, especially in the Big Ten and SEC. The fan bases at some schools, such as Georgia Tech, have created multiple collectives. Some collectives have already merged, such as Florida State’s Rising Spear and Warpath 850.
What plans are in store for Jackets for Atlanthropy?
“Jackets for Atlanthropy organizes and financially backs activities designed for Georgia Tech student-athletes and fans to engage in charitable work or fundraising in Atlanta,” according to its website. “Our efforts support local charities and afford the opportunity for athletes to receive compensation for use of their name, image, and likeness (NIL).”
The collective’s website says donations are 100-percent tax deductible. It also says 100 percent of donations will be given directly to partner charities “who, in turn, compensate student-athletes via approved NIL channels for their work when they participate in a charity activity.” Stapler told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution the collective’s goal is for “close to 90 percent” of the donations to go to the athletes.
The website lists three tiers of donations: less than $5,000 annually, at least $5,000 but less than $25,000, and $25,000 or more. Donors whose gift totals reach the second tier can earmark donations for a specific charity, athlete or athletic program. Those whose gifts reach the highest tier will be invited to attend Board of Directors meetings and could be invited to join the Board.
Jackets for Atlanthropy’s website says the collective has been in contact with charities including Good Samaritan Health Center Atlanta, Hands on Atlanta, Open Hand Atlanta, Atlanta Mission, YMCA of Metro Atlanta and St. Francis Table. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported that current Georgia Tech football players Zeek Biggers, Leo Blackburn, Trenilyas Tatum and Jordan Williams have agreed to promote and participate in upcoming events.
The collective’s goal is to support Georgia Tech athletes across all sports.
Jackets for Atlanthropy has meal packing events at Open Hand scheduled for July 18 and July 27, plus an event at the St. Francis Table soup kitchen on Aug. 6.