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NFL Prospect Rashan Gary Starts Agency Ahead Of The Draft

NFL Prospect Rashan Gary Starts Agency Ahead Of The Draft

NFL draft prospect Rashan Gary aims to make a long-lasting impact on the sport before ever turning pro. 

What Happened

Gary, a University of Michigan defensive tackle, said he's starting his own sports agency, Rashan Gary Sports, ahead of the 2019 NFL Draft.

Gary, who is expected to be a top pick in the draft, said he's recruited NFL prospect Montre Gregory to the agency, and hopes to land more athletes across the MLB, NBA and NHL.

"I always had a dream of playing in the NFL and leaving a legacy," Gary said in an interview with The Associated Press. "The older I got, I understood that football is not forever. This is a step to take care of my family in the long run. Starting this agency is a way I can definitely do that in my years on the football field and the years when I'm not on the football field."

Why It Matters

Athletes looking to take more control of their business destiny has become a growing trend in recent years; Lonzo Ball foregoing an endorsement deal with one of the major footwear players in favor of his own brand is one of the most notable examples.

Gary’s decision is the latest attempt for upcoming athletes to not only change how the game is played, but how the business around sport operates.

NFL draft consultant Gil Brandt said he does not think another player has tried to start their own agency ahead of the draft.

Darren Heitner, a sports attorney and author, doesn't blame Gary.

"Many are surprised that the NFLPA [NFL Player's Association] is okay with it. That is what their camp has said to me, but it remains to be seen if the NFLPA will say anything at all," Heitner told Benzinga.

"It's absolutely happening, but it may be deemed impermissible... from what I've been told the NFLPA has basically signed off on it without saying anything publicly."

What's Next

NFL agent Ian Clarke will negotiate Gary’s contract as an paid employee of the company and will not receive a percentage.

"We're looking to be in all major league sports," Clarke told ESPN. "There are agents we're having conversations with, and it's just a matter of securing some of those deals."

It remains to be seen whether or not the agency can attract more athletes on the premises that while the firm may not have the experience, it aligns with the athletes' interests. 

Gary told the AP it's a game-changer. 

"Now players know the power they have, and taking this step is big for me, my family and my dream."

Heitner says a conflict of interest could arise if Gary is in contract negotiations with the same team as another client, but asserted that if a conflict does arise any player can terminate their contract with the agency and sign with another agency.

"It happens all the time."

Related Links:

Ricky Williams, Terrell Owens Launch The 'Freedom Football League'

Media Analyst: NBA Could Be As Popular As The NFL In 10 Years

Photo credit: Maize & Blue Nation, Flickr


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