Serving the Southern Illinois University community since 1916.

The Daily Egyptian

Serving the Southern Illinois University community since 1916.

The Daily Egyptian

Serving the Southern Illinois University community since 1916.

The Daily Egyptian

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SIU Athletics announces “Pride of Little Egypt” NIL Collective

SIU+Athletics+announces+Pride+of+Little+Egypt+NIL+Collective

Southern Illinois Athletics announced its new Name, Image and Likeness collective on Wednesday, titled “Pride of Little Egypt.”

Pride of Little Egypt succeeds the former Saluki Alliance and FloorburnU collectives, which focused on Saluki football and men’s basketball respectively.

According to a press release from SIU Athletics, Pride of Little Egypt will support student-athletes from all 17 sports supported by the university.

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Since NIL came into the college sports landscape in 2021, universities have been working to find the best ways to navigate a world where student-athletes are allowed compensation for endorsements, sponsorships and other services that were previously prohibited by the NCAA. This could include autograph signings, attending events, social media posts and other marketing activities.

Student-athletes are permitted to receive compensation from alumni, fans and other donors given that it is in exchange for a service other than playing their sport or otherwise committing to the university, which ensures against “pay for play” agreements.

With many factors at play, NIL collectives exist in order to streamline the relationship between student-athletes and those who wish to work with them. They are independent of the university, but work closely with those within and outside of the program to maximize the benefits for all parties.

The collective’s website can be found at prideoflittleegypt.com, which includes donation links and other information about the organization.

“We are thrilled about the direction of Saluki Athletics, and Pride of Little Egypt is a major piece of that bright future,” SIU athletic director Tim Leonard said in a statement. “This is how we recruit and retain the best players and bring championships to Carbondale.”

Saluki Athletics has seen recent success in various sports, including recent conference championships in softball and men’s golf. Pride of Little Egypt’s focus on all sports should directly benefit student-athletes outside of so-called “revenue sports.”

“Our staff and student-athletes are thrilled about the possibilities provided by Pride of Little Egypt,” Saluki softball coach Jen Sewell said.

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While NIL cannot be used as a direct recruiting tool, having the infrastructure available for student-athletes looks to indirectly aid in recruiting and retaining players.

“Our mission is to win championships,” Saluki football head coach Nick Hill said. “That requires hard work from our student-athletes and coaching staff, and championship-level support from our fans.”

As the marquee men’s basketball program enters a new era under head coach Scott Nagy, Pride of Little Egypt will look to be a vital building block in revitalizing Saluki basketball.

“This is an opportunity for Saluki Nation to enhance our student-athletes’ experience,” Nagy said. “It’s one of the top factors in today’s college basketball environment.”

Donation options on the Pride of Little Egypt website include monthly amounts of $8.99, $24.99, $99.99, or $249.99 per month, and annual amounts of $100, $250, $1,000, or $2,500 per year. Donations can be made towards all sports or any individual program. Donors can also work with individual student-athletes by contacting the collective.

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