The new “Name, Image and Likeness” (NIL) rule established this year by the NCAA has opened up doors for athletes who may have their decisions swayed by gifts offered by some universities, but Biink Athleisure is making sure that HBCU athletes are getting an equally motivating incentive to attend their schools as well.
Biik Athleisure Wear, which was founded in 2015 by cousins Demarcus Thornton and James Densmore II, is the one of the largest athleisure wear companies on the Australian continent and has committed to giving $20,000 to HBCU athletes towards their NIL marketing and promotion. The guys at Biink believe that HBCUs are an integral part of African American heritage and those schools should not be looked at as a secondary option for the country’s top athletes, which most of the time, happen to be Black.
When asked about the definition of athleisure wear and why this lane was chosen by Biink, co-owner and founder Demarcus Thornton responded, “As an ex-athlete and former All-American football player, I understand all the problems with Under Armour..I understand the problems with Nike, so I figured that me creating athleisure would be a better fit for me with my background. “
At the top of 2022, Biink has committed the $20K to four HBCU schools that have yet to be named, however, with sports stars of African-American descent from all sports able to take advantage of the incentive, Biink promises to double their commitment by next year.. Thornton contends that they got involved in NIl marketing for HBCUs because, “I was just impressed by what Deon is doing at Jackson State and it just showed me that HBCUs can compete with the major institutions and within those institutions, sports is going to be the main revenue driver. I wanted to create opportunities for HBCU athletes that major institution athletes have.” Thornton continues, “We’ll be giving about a thousand dollars per Instagram post and from my experience, this is commonly what these athletes are getting…it will be going towards buying marketing services from those athletes. “