Loyola-Chicago received permission last week from Sister Jean to give licenses to apparel and design companies to use her likeness and image in everything from t-shirts to socks to bobbleheads.
According to a report from ESPN, the t-shirt company Fanatics has sold more Sister Jean gear than they have Loyola gear all year long and Phil Sklar’s bobblehead company has sold more Sister Jean bobbleheads than any other bobblehead they have made.
I love the Sister Jean story, but when I read things like this, I can’t help but think about what amateurism means in situations like this. The royalties made off of these licenses will be put back into the Loyola Athletic Fund. The money doesn’t go to the players that actually were able to make this run possible by, you know, playing basketball well.
They can’t license their own image. Their can’t profit off of their own likeness. Their success will earn the school some money and some notoriety, it will get their head coach some bonuses, and either a raise or a new job with a higher salary.
And it will get them … what, exactly?
Everyone profits off of college basketball players come tournament time, except the players themselves.