March Madness biggest earners: NIL deals made several college basketball stars MILLIONAIRE. Although Angel Reese has 1.8 million dollars, she is not number 1, she is ranked far below this girl..

March Madness biggest earners:

NIL deals made several college basketball stars MILLIONAIRE. Although Angel Reese has 1.8 million dollars, she is not number 1, she is ranked far below this girl..

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The landscape of college athletics has become the wild west since the introduction of name, image, and likeness (NIL) deals – which has seen athletes earn money seemingly hand over fist.

It’s a positive sign. For decades, universities were raking in money and entire industries popped up around college sports – but the athletes were only able to be paid in the form of scholarships.

Now that the NCAA allows those same athletes to be indirectly compensated via endorsement deals, players are able to earn what the market deems as worthy of their talent. And there’s plenty of talent deserving of that.

Across both men’s and women’s college basketball there are athletes making up to millions of dollars in endorsements – and from major companies too.

Here, DailyMail.com takes a look at the ten biggest earners that will be gracing the courts of March Madness.

Angel Reese
Jared McCain
Angel Reese  and Jared McCain both have struck it rich through NIL deals this year

10. R.J. Davis – $625,000

The senior point guard from the University of North Carolina is in the midst of his best ever season with the Tar Heels.

After playing all four years in Chapel Hill, Davis is averaging 21.4 points, 3.7 rebounds, and 3.5 assists per game and was named a first-team All-American.

According to FanSided, Davis has raked in $625,000 in NIL endorsements and is listed fifth in On3’s NIL rankings.

He’s inked endorsement deals with the likes of coffee maker Keurig, ZIPS Car Wash, and organic food brand Simple Truth.

The list of best March Madness NIL earners begins with North Carolina senior guard R.J. Davis
The list of best March Madness NIL earners begins with North Carolina senior guard R.J. Davis

9. Paige Bueckers – $650,000

A part of the biggest dynasty in women’s college basketball – if not all of women’s sports – Paige Bueckers is a star point guard at the University of Connecticut.

‘Paige Buckets’, as she’s known by her fans, has been dealing with injuries throughout her time at UConn, but has had a career-best season this year.

She’s got 21.3 points, 4.8 rebounds, and 3.7 assists per game as she was also placed on the AP All-American first team.

Thanks to a strong stable of endorsements from the likes of Gatorade, Nike, StockX, Chegg, Dunkin’ and more – she’s brought in an estimated $650,000 in NIL money, per SportsKeeda.

UConn star guard Paige Bueckers has an impressive list of endorsements in her stable
UConn star guard Paige Bueckers has an impressive list of endorsements in her stable

8. Zach Edey – $810,000

Zach Edey was recently named the AP’s National Player of the Year and is a consensus first-team All-American.

That’s for good reason, as the Purdue 7-footer has been one of the most dominant forces in college basketball this year.

He’s got a career-high 24.4 points per game alongside 11.7 boards and 2.1 assists on average.

With endorsements from trading card company Topps and collectibles startup Daps, Edey has brought in an estimated $810,000 according to Forbes.

Purdue 7-footer Zach Edey was named the National Player of the Year by the AP
Purdue 7-footer Zach Edey was named the National Player of the Year by the AP

7. Hunter Dickinson – $844,000

The first player on this list who transferred to his current school, Hunter Dickinson was the biggest name in the 2023 transfer portal – when he left Michigan for Kansas.

That move has paid off massively – with Dickinson averaging 18 points and a career high 11.1 rebounds per game and getting on the AP All-American second-team.

According to Forbes, Dickinson has earned an estimated $844,000 through NIL deals.

That’s thanks to endorsements from Adidas and Outback Steakhouse as well as Wendy’s, Skims, and Keurig.

A transfer to the University of Kansas has paid off for big man Hunter Dickinson (1)
A transfer to the University of Kansas has paid off for big man Hunter Dickinson (1)

6. Armando Bacot – $930,000

Our second North Carolina Tar Heel on this list is big man Armando Bacot – the longest-tenured player on this list.

Bacot has been playing college basketball for five seasons – all of them at UNC – and this year might be his best chance at winning a national title.

He’s averaging 14.3 points, 10.3 rebounds, and 1.5 assists per game and was named as an honorable mention to the AP All-American team.

Per Forbes, Bacot is earning $930million through endorsements – including deals with Frosted Flakes, Dunkin’ and BOA Nutrition.

North Carolina super senior Armando Bacot cracked $900k in NIL endorsements this year
North Carolina super senior Armando Bacot cracked $900k in NIL endorsements this year

5. Rob Dillingham – $1million

The first player to crack seven figures is Kentucky freshman Rob Dillingham – who is likely headed to the NBA after just one season in Lexington.

He averaged 15.2 points, 2.9 rebounds, and 3.9 assists with the Wildcats this year – which proved to be lucrative on and off the court.

Not only is he projected to be an NBA lottery pick, but Dillingham has also brought in $1million in NIL endorsement deals.

That includes deals with the likes of financial company NerdWallet, Skims, and Topps among others.

Kentucky freshman Rob Dillingham is the first player on this list to break $1million in NIL deals
Kentucky freshman Rob Dillingham is the first player on this list to break $1million in NIL deals

T-3. Jared McCain – $1.1million

Another Freshman makes the list – and this one could also be a first-round draft pick, if he decides to turn pro.

Duke point guard Jared McCain is averaging 13.4 points, 4.9 rebounds, and 1.8 assists per game. His play has been spectacular, but some wonder if he plans to leave for the league now – or will stay in Durham to partner with incoming recruits like Cooper Flagg.

McCain has more than enough money to keep him in college though – with a reported $1.1million lining his pockets, according to On3.

That’s thanks to endorsements from brands like Crocs, CashApp, Skims, and Celsius.

Duke freshman guard Jared McCain is the highest earning men's basketball player on this list
Duke freshman guard Jared McCain is the highest earning men’s basketball player on this list

T-3. Flau’jae Johnson – $1.1million

The remaining spots on this list all belong to women’s basketball players – a testament to the star power that women’s college basketball has produced this year.

We start with LSU star Flau’jae Johnson. Flau’s got flow on and off the court, with the guard writing bars and rapping when she isn’t hooping.

This year, she averaged 14.2 points, 5.4 rebounds, and 2.5 assists per game and helped lead LSU to a third-seed in the NCAA tournament.

She brought in $1.1million in NIL money, according to On3, with endorsements through Puma, Powerade, Papa John’s, Doritos, and many more.

LSU Tiger Flau'jae Johnson's talents on and off the court have landed her big endorsements
LSU Tiger Flau’jae Johnson’s talents on and off the court have landed her big endorsements

2. Angel Reese – $1.8million

Flau’jae is not the only Bayou Bengal on the list – with Angel Reese taking the No. 2 spot.

Reese has still been one of the faces of college basketball since her matchup with Iowa in the national championship game last year – with the Tigers star earning $1.8million in NIL money, according to On3.

She’s had a dip in production this year – with fewer average points per game this year (19) than last season (23) – as LSU struggled to maintain last-season’s form.

But she’s maintaining her financial and brand dominance – signing deals with Goldman Sachs, Beats by Dre, Reebok, Amazon, and more.

Angel Reese continues to benefit from her growing popularity of last year's title run
Angel Reese continues to benefit from her growing popularity of last year’s title run

1. Caitlin Clark – $3.1million

Topping the list of the highest earners at March Madness is the biggest name in college basketball this year: Iowa basketball star Caitlin Clark.

Clark broke every point scoring record that the NCAA threw at her this season – passing even the great Pete Maravich to become college basketball’s all-time scoring leader.

She’s been scoring off the court as well – with an NIL portfolio estimated by On3 to be worth $3.1million.

Clark’s the face of Gatorade, State Farm, Buick, Nike, and so many more as the National Player of the Year leaves the college game to be the No. 1 overall pick by the Indiana Fever.

Caitlin Clark, the NCAA’s all-time leading scorer, tops the table of NIL earners this March

 

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