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IOWA Magazine | 03-01-2022

Iowa Student-Athletes Use NIL Deals to Give Back

Meet 11 Hawkeyes who have dedicated their platforms to supporting UI Stead Family Children's Hospital and other causes.
University of Iowa Student Atheletes PHOTOS: HAWKEYESPORTS.COM Several Hawkeyes are using their NIL earnings to give back to the local community, including to University of Iowa Stead Family Children's Hospital.

Since last June's NCAA decision allowing student-athletes to profit off their name, image, and likeness (NIL), several Hawkeyes have leveraged the financial opportunity to support local charities and organizations, including UI Stead Family Children's Hospital. From selling personalized apparel to holding auctions for unique experiences, Hawkeyes are getting creative in their fundraising efforts for a good cause.

While the pandemic has prevented Iowa student-athletes from visiting patients at Stead Family Children's Hospital as they have in years past, Hawkeyes are using NIL as a new means to provide support.

"Seeing several Iowa student-athletes give back to support our patients and their families is truly inspiring," says Alexander Bassuk, chair of the Stead Family Department of Pediatrics. "Their collective effort is making a big difference in so many people's lives."

Here are just a few of the current and former Hawkeye student-athletes who have used NIL to pay it forward.


Keegan and Kris Murray

Keegan and Kris Murray

Men's basketball forwards

  • FUNDRAISING EFFORT: Partnered with Zoarc Athletics, a Dubuque-based company owned by Connor Weitz (15BA), on a signature athletic apparel line
  • SUPPORTS: UI Stead Family Children's Hospital (pediatric cancer unit) and Special Olympics Iowa
  • MOTIVATION: "Being able to be a part of something bigger than myself has always been my goal in life," says Keegan.
Caitlin Clark

Caitlin Clark

Women's basketball guard

  • FUNDRAISING EFFORT: Hy-Vee, which has an NIL partnership with Clark, made a $1,000 gift to UI Stead Family Children's Hospital in January when Clark became the fastest player in Big Ten women's basketball history to reach 1,000 career points.
  • SUPPORTS: UI Stead Family Children's Hospital

Spencer Petras and Dane Belton

Spencer Petras and Dane Belton

Quarterback and former football defensive back

  • FUNDRAISING EFFORT: Collaborated with Estela's Fresh Mex restaurant in Iowa City and Coralville to raise $5 for every Hawk Box (family size to-go taco bar meal kit)

    Belton also created a superhero to inspire kids and raise additional funds

  • SUPPORTS: UI Stead Family Children's Hospital
Luka Garza

Luka Garza (21BBA)

Former basketball center and current NBA player

  • FUNDRAISING EFFORT: Auctioned an NFT (nonfungible token) that included one-of-a-kind digital cards, autographed shoes, one-on-one experiences with Garza, and a lifetime pass to any of his basketball camps
  • SUPPORTS: UI Stead Family Children's Hospital

Tory Taylor

Tory Taylor

Football punter

  • FUNDRAISING EFFORT: Partnered with Raygun—a Midwest-based printing, design, and clothing company—on signature apparel, including a "Punting is Winning" T-shirt
  • SUPPORTS: Count the Kicks, a stillborn prevention campaign
  • MOTIVATION: "No one should have to go through what some of those mothers and children are going through."
Tyler Goodson

Tyler Goodson

Former football running back

  • FUNDRAISING EFFORT: A sweepstakes where fans could buy raffle tickets for unique experiences, including a virtual meet-and-greet with Goodson, autographed game-worn cleats, and TG brand apparel
  • SUPPORTS: UI Stead Family Children's Hospital

Gratt Reed and Peyton
Haack

Gratt Reed and Peyton Haack

Men's track and field student athletes

  • FUNDRAISING EFFORT: Sold bottled water at Iowa football pregame tailgates outside of Kinnick Stadium
  • SUPPORTS: UI Stead Family Children's Hospital
  • MOTIVATION: "The children's hospital is important to us because it's a big part of the Hawkeye community," says Reed.
Tyler Linderbaum

Tyler Linderbaum (21BA)

Former football center

  • FUNDRAISING EFFORT: Sold merchandise, including Iowa Wave T-shirts featuring Linderbaum waving to UI Stead Family Children's Hospital patients
  • SUPPORTS: UI Stead Family Children's Hospital
  • MOTIVATION: "As football players, our support for the hospital doesn't stop with the Wave. I'm honored to do my part to give back."
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