Marc D’Amelio brings NIL experience to UConn athletics

Besides being a father to two Tik Tok stars with a combined 205.3 million followers, Marc D’Amelio brings his savvy marketing skills to his alma mater, University of Connecticut (UConn), for the “D’Amelio Huskies Collective.”

This NIL collective is exclusively for student-athletes of UConn to help them grow their social media presence while putting some money in their pocket.

D’Amelio transferred to UConn after leaving feeling in awe with the sports atmosphere of the college, specifically after the NIT-Ohio State championship.

“You feel this, where it’s not part of a big city, so you feel like it’s your home,” D’Amelio said. “Throughout the years, I’ve always tried to get back up there as much as possible,”

Since graduation from UConn and having a family, it’s been harder for D’Amelio to get back to the community.

“Uconn is starting to do a better job seeking out to alumni for help.” D’Amelio said. “There’s different variations of involvement, there were times when my kids were really young that we were more [focused on being] parents than getting involved.”

D’Amelio says he’s been fortunate enough to meet so many of the great coaches and fans in the UConn athletic department. He talked about how he wanted to use his platform to elevate UConn athletics, and one of those ways would be through showing up to games and events.

“We’re just really lucky as a school to get [great coaches], from Geno to Calhoun and to Danny Hurley and Coach Mora.” D’Amelio said.

He also talked about the passionate fans, who he doesn’t expect to “show up when we’re losing,” but does see the greatness in the athletic department when “it all comes together, we’ve seen it time and time again.”

Something you might not know about D’Amelio is that he is in the sports apparel business. He has a sales agency that represents Mitchell & Ness, a brand that sells authentic and throwback sports jerseys. He is also a partner and on the board for Mitchell & Ness.

D’Amelio’s background out of UConn was in the apparel industry, focusing on licensed sports companies like Adidas to Mitchell & Ness.

Because of this background, D’Amelio said he understood the name, image and likeness (NIL) space. He understands the concept behind it and paying athletes for NIL.

” I thought this opportunity with UConn bridges what I’ve been doing in my career with Mitchell & Ness and NIL companies,” D’Amelio said. “What my new career has been is helping my kids navigate social media and building their brands and building our personal family brand.”

That’s where D’Amelio’s vision of a hybrid NIL collective came to be.

The “D’Amelio Huskies Collective” focuses on helping athletes put money into student-athletes’ pockets while helping them develop their personal brand and social media media presence.

“99 percent of the student-athletes at UConn are not going to play professional sports, and are going to have to do something entrepreneurial or get a job elsewhere.” D’Amelio said, on how the collective will help them in college and post-college life.

The goal for the collective will be to enhance personal and professional growth and not focus on the money. He also wants to focus on what the student-athletes are interested in and create a collective around that. First, comes getting the business side set up.

“We have a commitment of a half a million dollars and we raised $250,000 so far,” D’Amelio said.

Just this money raised in such a short time shows the commitment and passion the UConn community has for its athletics.

D’Amelio also wants a unique group of athletes together for the collective, not just the teammate with the most followers or the captain. He doesn’t want to look at the follower count, rather the quality of work and the D1 athlete that will best represent the brand

“There’s a lot of kids and young people that are plucked out of the middle of nowhere and make big careers out of [social media.]” D’Amelio said. “There’s not an application process, we’re just looking for people who want to be apart of it. It’s not exclusive,”

Something great about the state of Connecticut is that its UConn athletes are allowed to use UConn gear in their NIL-related posts. this means an athlete might have an advantage over a “normal” influencer because they bring the athletic side to the table.

A few brands already on board include Lightricks, a video editing and photography software, and Step, a mobile banking app for teens to help build their credit profile. Lightricks also committed $50,000 to the collective.

“As we grow our student athlete members, [I want to] start to talk to them about what their interests are.” D’Amelio said. “If someone is a fan of photography, yeah we have Lightricks, but if they really want to work with cameras, reach out to Cannon or reach out to these companies,”

Another exciting thing happening in the D’Amelio household is Marc’s wife and daughter, Heidi and Charli, starring in this season of “Dancing With the Stars.” The mother-daughter D’Amelio duo is the first to appear on the show, and Marc and daughter, Dixie, are very excited.

““I couldn’t be more proud of Charli for the reason that she loved dance and dance has been such an outlet for her for the longest time. She lost that a little bit with the notoriety.” Marc D’Amelio said.

For his wife, Heidi, who had talked about starring on the show in the past, he’s equally as excited for her because she was a dancer as a kid and in high school.

He loves the bond that is created between Heidi and Charli, even if they are competing. He also loves that the spotlight isn’t on him and Dixie for a change.

Now, the D’Amelio’s recently did a lot of press for their second season of “The D’Amelio Show” on Hulu. Marc talked about how he always tries to incorporate UConn in his press.

The D’Amelio Huskies Collective is up-and-coming for student-athletes at UConn.

2 responses to “Marc D’Amelio brings NIL experience to UConn athletics”

  1. […] I also chat with Marc D’Amelio about UConn’s newest NIL collective, headed by D’Amelio. Check out this article about “D’Amelio Huskies Collective.” […]


  2. […] Marc D’Amelio brings NIL experience to UConn athletics […]


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