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Jaden Rashada Sues Billy Napier and Florida Boosters over Failed NIL Deal

Nick Roushby:Nick Roush05/21/24

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The first tragedy in the NIL marketplace is a story that is not yet complete. About eighteen months after Jaden Rashada and his high-profile high school recruitment ended, the quarterback is suing Florida head coach Billy Napier and boosters of the school.

Before diving into the details, let this fact sink in for a moment. A Georgia quarterback is suing the Florida head coach. In the SEC, it just means more.

If you recall, Rashada was a five-star talent who got into a bidding war between Miami and Florida. He ultimately signed with Florida and agreed to a four-year NIL package worth $13.85 million. That deal disappeared and he ultimately signed with Arizona State. Rashada entered the transfer portal following his freshman season and landed at Georgia.

On Tuesday morning a 37-page complaint was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida that claims he was repeatedly lied to for him to flip his commitment from Miami to Florida. In addition to Napier, former Florida director of NIL and player engagement Marcus Castro-Walker and well-known UF booster Hugh Hathcock are named as defendants.

The short version of this long story is that Rashada was promised a signing bonus in early December of 2022. When the check never arrived in the mail, the quarterback did not sign with the Gators. Two days after the signing bonus was due, the collective terminated the contract with Rashada.

Where will this go? That’s an excellent question because this is unprecedented. I’m not a lawyer, but there appears to be plenty of standing for Rashada to sue based on the abrupt termination of the contract from the collective.

While most of the lawsuit centers around the involvement of the folks behind the scenes at Florida, if Napier is directly tied to paying Rashada to play for the Gators, it could be the smoking gun that takes down the Florida head coach.

This is a wild story that will not end soon. Even though Rashada will back up Carson Beck this fall, this certainly enflames the rivalry between Georgia and Florida as Billy Napier enters a high-pressure third season in Gainesville.

Pete Nakos Details the Jaden Rashada Lawsuit

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2024-06-20