Five-star basketball recruit Mikey Williams has become the first prep basketball star to sign with a major sports representation agency (Excel Sports Management) for guidance in maximizing his name, image, and likeness endorsements and sponsorships. Williams is entering his junior year of high school and is already one of the top prospects of the 2024 NBA Draft class. His 5 million social media followers create the significant potential to capitalize on the changes in NIL regulation.
The San Diego native will attend Lake Norman Christian in Huntersville, North Carolina, and display his talent as a member of Vertical Academy. Williams signed with Excel Sports Management to bring his personal brand to life through endorsements and partnerships that are authentic to who he is and what he stands for. Matt Davis, Excel vice president, believes the agency will generate millions of dollars for Williams.
We’ve already seen how legislation has allowed college athletes to profit financially from NIL endorsements. However, no high school prospect has fully actualized the opportunity until now. The NCAA won’t revoke college athletics eligibility from high school student-athletes for engaging in NIL activities. Still, high schoolers should consult their state legislation and the appropriate bylaws of their athletic association to ensure they maintain their eligibility for competing in high school. North Carolina doesn’t have an NIL law prohibiting high school athletes from pursuing endorsement deals and similar opportunities. As long as Williams’s high school athletic association doesn’t restrict such activity, he is permitted to profit from his name, image, and likeness while keeping his eligibility. Mikey Williams could serve as the blueprint for other teenage phenoms to cash in on their talent and brand.