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Garnet Trust launches to create NIL opportunities for USC student-athletes

Written by Garnet Trust

Legislation allowing intercollegiate athletes to financially benefit from their name, image, and likeness (NIL) has changed the landscape of college sports and media.

Until now, NIL activity for student-athletes at the University of South Carolina has been on a slower growth curve.

Enter Garnet Trust, the first and only company in the South Carolina market – and the state itself – created to effectively capture the wealth of NIL opportunities for USC student-athletes.

“After 23 years of covering Carolina — and the trust we’ve built in the community — we’re in the unique and fortunate position to take advantage of the new name, image, and likeness laws in a way that benefits USC student-athletes, Gamecock fans, and local businesses,” said Brian Shoemaker, founder of Garnet Trust.

One arm of the organization will allow supporters to contribute funds that will be used to fund legal and compliant NIL opportunities for student-athletes.

Created NIL initiatives funded by Garnet Trust will include sponsored interviews as well as exclusive experiences for supporters like virtual meet and greets, in-person events, apparel raffles, direct messages from athletes, and more.

“Garnet Trust is a game-changer and a win-win for everyone involved,” said Chris Clark, Director of Operations for Garnet Trust. “Student-athletes can finally tap into a wealth of NIL opportunities and supporters get access to compelling content and exclusive experiences, all while participating in this space in a compliant fashion.”

Another arm of Garnet Trust is in place to provide media services – through the heavily-trafficked and vibrant platform and social channels – to businesses that want to have South Carolina student-athletes feature their products or services in front of a large audience.

“For businesses, fans, and most importantly, the student-athletes, this is a no-brainer,” said Wes Mitchell, Director of Media Services. “With the NIL space in its infancy as far as college athletics is concerned, Garnet Trust is a necessary component of the process in connecting businesses and fans to the student-athletes they hope to support while also simultaneously providing a platform to amplify the reach of the brands of those student-athletes and businesses.”

Per state of South Carolina law, Garnet Trust is unaffiliated with the University of South Carolina and is not associated with The Gamecock Club.

Garnet Trust is also building an advisory board comprised of former South Carolina student-athletes who have gone on to professional success in multiple fields; these individuals will periodically review funding and operations to ensure the maximization of resources. Board members will be announced at a later date.

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