Women's College Basketball

Women’s March Madness Championship Controversy More NIL Money for Angel Reese and Caitlin Clark

We independently review everything we recommend based on our strict editorial guidelines. When you buy through our links, we may earn a commission. Learn More
angel reese caitlin clark

The recent Women’s NCAA Final Four tournament not only delivered exhilarating basketball games but also significantly impacted the Name, Image, and Likeness (NIL) value of two standout players, Caitlin Clark and Angel Reese. As the competition heated up, both athletes saw their NIL valuations more than double, according to On3. But did the controversy surrounding the national championship game contribute to this meteoric rise?

You Can See Angel Reese and Caitlin Clark A Lot After Championship Game Controversy

For those unfamiliar with NIL, it refers to the ability of college athletes to monetize their name, image, and likeness through endorsements, sponsorships, and other opportunities. Caitlin Clark, a University of Iowa guard, and Angel Reese, a Louisiana State University (LSU) forward, have both successfully capitalized on their NIL potential.

During the women’s March Madness national championship game, LSU defeated Iowa 102-85, and Reese’s on-court trash-talking directed at Clark stirred up quite a buzz on social media. This incident, which involved Reese using a hand gesture popularized by professional wrestler John Cena, was done by Clark herself in Iowa’s Final Four win over South Carolina.

However, Reese’s trash-talk caught plenty of negative attention unlike Clark’s gesture, leading to discussions about sportsmanship and racial double standards.

In response to the controversy, Clark defended Reese during an ESPN interview, stating that the LSU forward should not be criticized for her actions. Clark emphasized that both athletes competed fiercely, and the game was incredibly enjoyable, ultimately helping to attract more fans to women’s basketball.

Clark and Reese’s NIL Valuations More Than Double After Final Four

According to On3, following their impressive performances and the national championship controversy, both Clark and Reese’s NIL valuations skyrocketed. Clark, who already had deals with Buick, Nike, and Hy-Vee, gained over 425,000 followers and saw her On3 NIL valuation jump to $739,000 – an increase of $547,000 since the previous week.

Reese, with partnerships that include Coach, McDonald’s, and Sparkling Ice, added more than 1.3 million followers in the same timeframe, pushing her On3 NIL valuation to $876,000 – a $485,000 increase.

Despite their remarkable gains, Clark and Reese still trail behind other female athletes in NIL valuations, including Livvy Dunne, Sunisa Lee, and the Cavinder twins. Nevertheless, their soaring NIL values showcase the impact of a high-profile championship game and the surrounding controversy.

While it’s impossible to definitively say if the national championship game controversy was the sole reason for their increased NIL valuations, it undoubtedly played a part. The heightened attention on the athletes and their spirited rivalry likely contributed to their elevated marketability and appeal to brands.

As the dust settles on the Women’s NCAA Final Four tournament, the lasting effects of the competition and controversy will continue to shape the careers of Caitlin Clark and Angel Reese. Both players have secured their spots as rising stars in women’s basketball, and their soaring NIL valuations suggest even greater opportunities lie ahead.

College Basketball Betting Content You May Like