With the recent changes to NIL agreements for college athletes, the opportunities for partnerships between athletes, colleges, and businesses have grown massively. I believe that the ability for colleges to both connect athletes with businesses and teach athletes how to negotiate NIL deals could lead to additional revenue for all parties. From the perspective of a student athlete, knowing that you’re attending a school with these partnerships already in place could be another incentive to attend. Considering the many partnerships Pitt Athletics already maintains with different businesses, I believe that this could be a lucrative opportunity to explore (if they aren’t already doing so to a certain extent).
One threat involved with college sports is how easy players can switch colleges with the transfer portal. With a better deal potentially around the corner, players have less incentive to stick around with a college for their entire degree. While this could lead to opportunities for Pitt to recruit better athletes (especially if they develop the skills to get players better advertising deals), it also means more resources will need to be allocated towards keeping players around. This is another dimension that colleges will need to monitor, and it further divides the words “student athlete,” with the focus being on switching schools towards whoever is good in the short term.
I personally prefer to work with numbers, and the technicals of social media engagement could be interesting to explore. Finding the best time of day to post, length of content, and rate of content could be beneficial, especially considering the large base of followers that Pitt Athletics has. The ability to have such large amounts of data to process already is great, and frequently updating these metrics when the ‘algorithm’ changes would put Pitt on the forefront of efficient social media posting. Since they are already generating great content, optimizing it would help the same work go farther online in an era where trends and the direction of social media is rapidly changing.