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Nike releases tribute video, special edition merchandise for Iowa's Caitlin Clark

Nakos updated headshotby:Pete Nakos03/03/24


Nike came ready for Caitlin Clark to make history on Sunday.

In the final second of the first half, the Iowa star hit two free throws to pass Pete Maravich’s scoring record and become the NCAA’s all-time scoring champ. One of the sportswear and sneaker giant’s major NIL ambassadors, Nike did not waste any time paying tribute to the face of college basketball.

On top of Nike billboards spread throughout Iowa City, the brand aired a 50-second TV spot entering halftime that has since gone viral on social media. The video honors Clark by breaking down all of her top honors throughout her career, capped off by being the new owner of the all-time NCAA scoring record.

Nike is also capitalizing on the moment through its apparel. The company released merchandise Sunday afternoon with the slogan “This was never a long shot.” T-shirts and long-sleeve shirts are available on Fanatics starting at $34.99.

Thanks to NIL, Clark will earn a percentage of those sales. When she surpassed Kelsey Plum’s women’s NCAA scoring title last month, more Clark-branded merchandise was sold in less than 24 hours than any other individual men’s or women’s NIL college athlete across all sports since 2022 when NIL merchandise began. She also became Fanatics’ top-selling college athlete in the NIL Era, passing the previous high seller, Colorado quarterback Shedeur Sanders.

Fox will livestream Clark’s postgame Senior Night across and the Fox Sports app, TikTok and YouTube. When Fox switches to NASCAR coverage following the game, fans will be able to turn to the company’s social media and app to catch Clark addressing Iowa fans for the final time at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.

The Iowa guard entered Sunday’s game leading the country with 32.2 points and 8.7 assists per game.

“I came to Iowa with huge aspirations and now I’m getting to play in front of 15,000-plus every single night and that’s so cool,” Clark said earlier this season. “Those are moments that you really can only dream of and now I’m living it every single day of my life and that’s really special.”

Caitlin Clark setting standard in NIL

But beyond the on-court stardom, Clark has set a standard in NIL. One of the most marketable names in college sports – right next to Livvy DunneAngel Reese and Bronny James – has not taken a penny from the Hawkeye-focused NIL collective Iowa Swarm. She also has notable endorsement deals with State FarmHy-Vee and Gatorade.

For the majority of her time as a college athlete, the guard opted to be repped by her uncle, Mike Nizzi. Now working with Alan ZuckerColleen Garrity and Erin Kane at Excel, she’s surrounded by a team that will ensure her eventual move to the WNBA goes smoothly – on the court and in business. The agency also reps Tiger WoodsPeyton and Eli Manning.

With 1.4 million social media followers and a $3.1 million On3 NIL Valuation, Clark has the highest-ranked valuation in women’s basketball. Her brand will continue to grow in the WNBA. The valuation is No. 4 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.

“So often, we talk about Roster Value being the driving force of NIL Valuation,” On3 founder and CEO Shannon Terry said. “But with Caitlin Clark it’s the exact opposite. There isn’t a high school or college athlete that has more national brand opportunities than Clark. Moving on to the WNBA is opening so many more endorsement opportunities – and well before her first professional game. She will be the face of the league and her On3 NIL Valuation is skyrocketing.”