STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (WHTM) — Ohio State Head Coach Ryan Day set the bar for NIL support at $13 million; James Franklin wants “more than the numbers you’ve heard.”
The Penn State football coach says that if his program wants to compete in the current landscape of college football, the Nittany Lions boosters and supporters need to be ready to match the other Power Five teams.
Day explained to Buckeyes boosters to keep current players happy and in the Ohio State program, the program would need $13 million for incentives, sponsorships and appearance fees. It was one of the first times a current FBS coach was willing to publicly state a cost associated with the new NIL era.
When the NCAA reversed course on the Name-Image-Likeness to allow college athletes to profit on appearances and sponsorships, it threw college football programs into the deep end. Hundreds of athletes ended up in the transfer portal in search of bigger programs that could offer them bigger paydays.
Penn State, who traditionally likes to build its program through high school recruiting, needs to keep up with the new NIL/Transfer Portal times, and that means financial support.
At his availability on June 8, 2022, Franklin was asked what he thinks of the bar set by Ryan Day, although Day’s name nor Ohio State were ever mentioned outright.
“If School X has a number, and we’re supposed to be competing with School X, why would our number be different?” Franklin asked passionately.
When pressed that Ohio State’s number seemed huge, Franklin took us all to class.
“Who determines the number?” Franklin asked somewhat rhetorically. “If you’re selling your house, do you determine the number? The market determines the value of your house. So if the number is huge everywhere, [then Penn State has to follow suit].”
His point is valid when programs are compared at a microlevel by every recruit, transfer portal athlete and coach involved in college football.
Franklin has said previously that Penn State can no longer ignore the way college football is changing and has to keep up or get ahead of the curve if it expects to contend for a Big Ten Title or College Football Playoff Championship.
In 36 meetings, Ohio State has the 22-14 all-time series lead with five straight wins dating back to 2017.
If Ohio State (or School X as Franklin calls it) is the Nittany Lions biggest competition for Big Ten dominance, NIL support is now an arms race.