NewsJaden Rashada Sues Florida Coach Over Failed $14M NIL Deal

Jaden Rashada Sues Florida Coach Over Failed $14M NIL Deal

There is a debate on whether NIL deals are good for student athletes.

Former University of Florida recruit Jaden Rashada filed a lawsuit against the school and its coach, Billy Napier, over his failed historic $14 million NIL deal.

Rashada claims he was defrauded of millions of dollars in his name, image, and money. The suit, filed on May 21 in the U.S. District Court in Pensacola, accuses Napier and businessman Hugh Hathcock of fake misrepresentation and inducement, aiding and abetting fraud, civil conspiracy to commit fraud, negligent misrepresentations, inference with a business relationship or contract, aiding and abetting tortious interference and vicarious liability. 

However, the deal was a violation of the NCAA bylaws. According to the suit, the coach vouched for the collective and mentioned Rashada would receive $1 million on signing day. “But before Rashada could arrive on Florida’s campus, the … contract was terminated — suddenly and without warning,” the suit read. 

The young player “tolerated” several delays in receiving payment before garnering “no faith in the UF football team’s leadership and the individuals who had constantly lied to him.” Rashada’s attorney, Rusty Hardin, said fraud such as this is becoming more and more common. “Sadly, this type of fraud is becoming more commonplace in the Wild West that is today’s college NIL landscape,” he said. 

“As the first scholar-athlete to take a stand against this egregious behavior, Jaden seeks to hold these defendants accountable for their actions and to expose their as-yet unchecked abuse of power.”

Other defendants in the suit include Gator’s former director of player engagement and NIL, Marcus Castro-Walker, and Velocity Automotive Solutions LLC, owned by Hathcock, who was said to provide most of the funding for Rashada’s deal.

According to ESPN, the Gator Collective, an independent fundraising organization that provided money to UF athletes, was behind the deal. But after the deal fell through, the group terminated the contract, and Rashada was released from his letter of intent. He ended up signing with his father’s alma mater, Arizona State, and committed to play for the Sun Devils.

RELATED CONTENT: University of Florida Releases Quarterback Jaden Rashada After NIL Deal for $13 Million is Rescinded

Source: Black Enterprise

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