Nico Iamaleava surpasses $1 million On3 NIL Valuation

On3 imageby:Jeremy Crabtree07/12/22


On3 image
Chad Simmons/On3

You can officially call Tennessee five-star commitment Nico Iamaleava a million-dollar quarterback.

For the first time, Nico Iamaleava of Long Beach (Calif.) Poly has an On3 NIL Valuation of $1 million. Iamaleava reached the mark Tuesday after he saw a $57,000 increase from previous weeks in his NIL value. Overall, Iamaleava has seen a 177% increase in his On3 NIL Valuation over the past 14 weeks. This includes a big boost following his MVP performance at Overtime’s OT7 7-on-7 league that caused a spike in his Instagram followers.

The On3 NIL Valuation is an index that looks to set the standard market value for both high school and college-level athletes. The NIL valuation does not act as a tracker of the value of NIL deals an athlete has completed to date. It rather signifies an athlete’s value at a certain moment in time.

With the increase, Iamaleava ranks No. 15 in the On3 NIL 100. The On3 NIL 100 is the first of its kind and the defacto NIL ranking of the top 100 high school and college athletes ranked by market valuation.

Iamaleava also ranks No. 2 in the On3 High School Football NIL Rankings. Only Arch Manning – a Texas Five-Star Plus+ quarterback commitment and the No. 1 overall recruit in the country – has a higher On3 NIL Valuation in high school football at $3.4 million.

One of the key factors in Iamaleava’s On3 NIL Valuation increase is his steady and continued social media growth. He now has more than 171,000 followers, including more than 110,000 on Instagram alone.

Another factor is the overall strengthening in the NIL market for quarterbacks. The top 20 quarterbacks in the On3 Consensus have an average On3 NIL Valuation of more than $455,000.

He also had a strong performance recently at Overtime’s OT7 7-on-7 league where he was named On3’s overall MVP. The on-the-field performance and the hype around it saw his Instagram account nearly double after the event was over.

Nico Iamaleava already making most of NIL

It’s believed Nico Iamaleava is the five-star recruit behind a potential $8 million NIL deal. It’s not been officially confirmed he is the recruit behind the reported deal with Tennessee collective Spyre Sports Group. But within 10 days of the deal being signed, Iamaleava committed to the Volunteers.

Since then, “Nico Mania” has captured Rocky Top.

During an unofficial visit to Knoxville this spring, he promoted on social media a local ice cream shop. He then greeted fans there for more than 30 minutes. He also set Vols Twitter on fire when he appeared on Instagram Live wearing a Mike Honcho T-Shirt. Vols Nation knows the inside joke behind the shirt and nickname bestowed on Tennessee baseball outfielder Jordan Beck, who become a NIL sensation in his own right.

Everywhere he went on the visit, he was the main attraction. He paused to sign autographs and take pictures. Heck, at one point it took him 30 minutes to get to his car after playing in a 7-on-7 tournament at a local high school. There was even a man that rapped with Iamaleava while the cameras were rolling.

It was crystal clear that “Nico Mania” had taken hold in Knoxville. And NIL experts agree that’s going to make Iamaleava’s value shoot higher in the coming months and weeks.

“This is just the tip of the iceberg,” an NIL expert told On3. “If he’s the $8 million recruit, he has a whole another year in high school to further build his brand. And it looks like he’s off to a great start doing that.”

More NIL growth potential

Expect to see his social media presence and On3 NIL Valuation grow even further. That is especially true since he’s officially committed to the Volunteers. Look for more and more Tennessee fans –- and even rival SEC fans -– to start to track him. For example, he added more than 1,000 new Twitter followers hours after he committed.

Nico Iamaleava is the No. 4 player overall in the country, according to the On3 Consensus, a complete and equally weighted industry-generated average that utilizes all four major recruiting media companies.

He ranks as the No. 3 quarterback and second-best player in California, per the On3 Consensus.

On3 ranks Nico Iamaleava similar to others in the industry as the No. 5 overall playerthird-best quarterback and second-ranked player in the Golden State.