Frequently Asked Questions

What is NIL?

Name, Image, and Likeness (NIL) refers to the right of college athletes to profit from their own name, image, and likeness. This means that college athletes can earn money by endorsing products or services, selling autographs or merchandise with their name or image, and other activities related to their personal brand. This is a new opportunity for college athletes to monetize their skills and popularity while still maintaining their amateur status and eligibility to compete in college sports.

How did NIL come about?

On June 21, 2021, the United States Supreme Court ruled unanimously that the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) cannot limit education-related benefits that colleges provide to student athletes, which includes the ability to earn money from their name, image, and likeness (NIL).

Why can't the university just sign deals directly with players?

Even with the recent court ruling allowing student athletes to monetize their name, image, and likeness (NIL), universities are still bound by the rules set forth by the NCAA, which prohibits universities from directly paying student-athletes.

The university is a massive enterprise. Why are fans being asked to help fund a collective?

Yes, the university does make a lot of money from its athletic department. That is true. However, it's against NCAA rules for them to directly pay student-athletes for participating in college sports.

Can the university facilitate or broker deals or agreements on behalf of the athletes?

While coaches and administrators at universities cannot directly negotiate NIL deals on behalf of their student-athletes, they can provide guidance and support in the process. They can educate their student-athletes on the rules and regulations surrounding NIL.

Why is the engagement and involvement of Buckeye Nation important?

Individual fans can play a critical role in the recruitment and retention of top athletes, and are essential for maintaining the elite status of Ohio State athletics. Every fan is important, and we need everyone to pitch in to maximize this opportunity. Without the support of Buckeye fans, we cannot fully leverage the potential of name, image, and likeness (NIL) deals to benefit Ohio State student-athletes. Buckeye Nation is massive, strong, and passionate, and we believe that together we can create a new era of success for OSU athletics.

What can fans do? And what's in it for us?

The 1870 Society is excited to offer a variety of membership options to Buckeye fans and businesses, each with its own set of unique and exclusive benefits. We understand that your support is precious and we want to ensure that our membership offerings are a true reflection of our appreciation for your contribution to our collective mission. Members not only support Ohio State athletics and its student-athletes, but also receive access to exciting experiences and opportunities that cannot be found anywhere else.

What Ohio State sports will you support?

At The 1870 Society, we believe in creating opportunities for all student athletes, regardless of their sport. As a university with over 1,000 student athletes participating in a wide variety of sports, we are committed to engaging with ALL athletes from all sports and providing them with the resources and support they need to succeed in the NIL landscape.

Why another collective?

While other collectives may exist, they are typically non-profit entities. This approach can be charitable and well-intentioned, but non-profit organizations have limitations on what they can do. As a for-profit entity, specifically an LLC, we have greater flexibility in helping student-athletes monetize their brand, offering new experiences to our fans, and engaging with the business community. Our for-profit status enables us to create more opportunities for growth and innovation, and we are committed to using this flexibility to help Ohio State student-athletes reach their full potential.

For-profit? An LLC? Why?

Our for-profit designation is crucial in giving The 1870 Society greater flexibility in the way we engage with fans, businesses, and student-athletes. Non-profit entities, due to their tax-exempt status, are subject to strict rules set by the IRS, which can restrict how they operate. By being a for-profit entity, we are not bound by the same limitations and can be more creative and nimble in responding to the evolving needs of our stakeholders. We are committed to using our flexibility to create a unique and sustainable business model that benefits all parties involved.

Is my contribution tax-deductible?

Any contributions made to The 1870 Society are not eligible for tax deductions. The 1870 Society is not a qualified charitable organization under the Internal Revenue Code, and as such, any financial contributions made to us do not qualify for tax-exempt status.

Are the founders doing this to make money?

We are driven to maintain the elite status of Ohio State and its athletic programs with a competitive and winning mindset. We have invested significant capital and time to establish this entity and as passionate fans, it has been an incredible experience to engage with coaches, athletes, and leaders of the university. Our primary goal is to ensure that the Ohio State University remains competitive in the NIL landscape, with no expectations or priority for financial gain. The success of Ohio State is our ultimate reward.