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West Virginia football takes tremendous step to help players develop their brand

Jesse Reed
Ben Queen-USA TODAY Sports

The West Virginia football program is taking an awesome, proactive step forward with a move to help its players develop their own personal brand.

West Virginia football partners with marketing guru

The school announced Thursday that is it partnering with brand marketing consultant and author Jeremy Darlow.

“Our football players will be learning how to build their own brand from a person who wrote the book on the subject and is an individual who has worked with some of the biggest names in sports and entertainment,” Mountaineers head coach Neal Brown said. “We’re excited to provide that level of expertise to our players.”

Darlow shared what he will be working to achieve with the West Virginia football players during this partnership.

“The goal is to teach athletes how to build personal brands that set them up for success in life, regardless of what happens in sports,” Darlow said. “Too often athletes are defined entirely by their athletic careers without developing influence in other areas of passion. My goal is to change that.”

This move will no doubt be seen as polarizing by many.

The NCAA is starting to see the light when it comes to allowing student-athletes to profit from their names, images and likeness. The NCAA’s Board of Governors recently announced it supports allowing “student-athletes to receive compensation for third-party endorsements both related to and separate from athletics.”

West Virginia is clearly taking this seriously, and it’s not hard to imagine this program’s proactive action could lead to a boon in recruiting.