UCF football: Spring jerseys feature QR codes as part of NIL push

ORLANDO, Fla. – Last year, Gus Malzahn presided over a spring football game where on the back of his UCF the players’ shirts were not their names but their manages on Twitter.

This year, the Knights have upped their game.

When they kick off the Spring Game on Saturday, the back of their jerseys will feature something else unique to college sports but still present in our daily lives: QR codes. Instead of a player’s roster number, the back of the jerseys will feature a giant QR code that, when scanned, will link to that player’s biography page on the UCF athletics website. From there, fans can find links to a player’s social media channels and websites to purchase their own player-branded merchandise.

It’s all part of UCF’s attempt to keep moving forward in the new world of Name, Image and Likeness (NIL).

UCF running back Isaiah Bowser shows off a QR-coded jersey.

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“Last year we put Twitter handles on our shirts. I was like, ‘What the hell am I doing?’ laughed Malzahn, the 56-year-old former Auburn coach. “We wanted to be the school that adopted him. In the old traditional schools, there is a lot of dynamics. Yeah, they are for but really, they are not for. We are a school that can fully embrace it – the young school, social media. It suits us. »

UCF has a membership of about 70,000 and the average age of its alumni is around 36, Malzahn says. It will only go down. The school trains approximately 20,000 students per year.

Just two years ago, Malzahn would never have thought he would adopt such things on shirts.

“It was a bit weird at first. Now it’s not,” he says. “Now it’s part of the job description.”

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Neal T. Doss