Crypto-powered digital collectibles featuring top Jayhawks players and head coach Bill Self are headed to the marketplace created by Mercury and G3 Marketing.
As the University of Kansas’ men’s basketball team looks to win its 16th Big 12 regular season conference title since 2005, it’s achieved a major victory off the court that puts it at the cutting edge of the college hoops landscape.
NFT and digital collectibles company Mercury, in collaboration with G3 Marketing, and logo rights from CLC, have forged an NIL partnership to support student-athletes through an NFT platform called Rock Chalk, the organizations announced Monday. KU fans will now be able to buy, sell and trade crypto-powered Jayhawk collectibles beginning Feb. 19, including limited-edition items featuring notable names like:
- Head men’s basketball head coach Bill Self
- All-Big 12 center David McCormack
- Sharpshooting two-guard Ochai Agbaji
- Two-time All-Big 12 point guard Remy Martin
“Just as Shopify has allowed brands to tailor their online experience to better connect with their customers, Mercury makes creating and selling digital collectibles simple, seamless, and customized so universities and sports properties can take their fan experience to the next level,” said Porter Grieve, Mercury’s co-founder and CEO. “As one of the most storied universities in the country and most successful basketball programs in NCAA history, working with the University of Kansas is an incredible next step for Mercury. We look forward to giving fans an online community focused around the team they love.”
With the big news, Kansas joins top college basketball programs like UConn leveraging blockchain technology and non-fungible tokens in the NIL space. Connecticut’s men’s team announced a partnership in January with Openlocker for the Bone Yard Huskyz Club, with player NFTs and PFPs bought and sold on Dapper Labs’ Flow blockchain.
With teams now joining in the mix along with individual player deals like Gonzaga’s Chet Holmgren, Memphis’ Jalen Duren, and others with Candy Digital— not to mention Kentucky’s men’s hoops team forging a crypto deal with FTX— both players and teams will continue to benefit as the NFT and name, image, and likeness markets show further growth and development.
“I’ve always been proud to be part of this historic program, and I see this as another milestone for the University of Kansas,” Agbaji said. “I’m excited to be at the forefront of NFTs in the NCAA and how this technology will create an entirely new forum for us to reach fans.”