FLORENCE, Ala. (WHNT) — UNA’s Athletics Department has announced the launch of a NIL Collective, Lion’s Share NIL Entity, in an effort to help develop opportunities for its student-athletes.

New name, Image and Likeness (NIL) rules, implemented in July 2021, allow all NCAA D1, D2 and D3 student-athletes to be compensated for their NIL through endorsement deals, social media and appearances/signings, etc.

In a message, UNA Athletics Director Josh Looney said this launch is a part of the athletics department’s growth into the ‘next phase of NIL.’

“As our athletic department grows into the next phase of NIL, we’re excited about the launch of the Lion’s Share NIL Entity as an official sponsor of UNA Athletics. The Lion’s Share has my steadfast support and our complete endorsement as the premier NIL Entity of UNA Athletics,” Looney wrote.

This entity encourages Lion supporters to explore ways their businesses and organizations -or even individuals – might be able to benefit by engaging with the student-athletes and their NIL opportunities through Lion’s Share.

Some of the developing NIL opportunities for UNA student-athletes include events such as appearances, camps, community engagement projects, and marketing partnerships.

Last fall, UNA Athletics became a founding partner of Altius Sports Partners NIL Academy Program. The AD said the partnership has provided student-athletes, coaches, administration, and donors, with access to ASP’s NIL advisory services and has positioned UNA well in an effort to build the nation’s best NIL program among FCS and ASUN institutions.

Looney said numerous UNA student-athletes have secured NIL opportunities as a result of the program embracing these opportunities and working to create pathways for their student-athletes.

“It’s an exciting time to be a Lion and momentum continues to build as we attack this new era of UNA Athletics together. Thanks to you, we have celebrated many “firsts” in our new Division I era and we’re poised to elevate our ROAR to new heights in the years ahead. Let’s Raise The Roar!” Looney added.

To learn more about the collective and how you or your business/organization can engage and help develop opportunities for student-athletes, you can visit the Lion Share website.