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Former Duke Players Discuss NIL

With apologies to Aladdin, it’s a brand new world

Continental Tire Challenge - Duke v Gonzaga
 LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - NOVEMBER 26: Trevor Keels #1 of the Duke Blue Devils looks on as teammate Wendell Moore Jr. #0 puts on the MVP award after the team’s 84-81 victory over the Gonzaga Bulldogs to win the Continental Tire Challenge at T-Mobile Arena on November 26, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images

The NIL revolution is not quite a year old but it’s already changed college sports dramatically - and it’s not done yet.

The News & Observer talked to several former Duke players including Wendell Moore, Trevor Keels and Josh Hairston, who played for Duke from 2010-2014 and who is now an agent.

Moore was basically glad guys could get paid. For his part, Keels said he didn’t really care about NIL because his focus was on winning (how cool is that?). And Hairston, with a bit more perspective, worries that young players don’t know what to do with the money when they get it.

Former Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski recently said that “People who make money never do simple things. They look at windows of opportunity. So the NCAA has been hit with a tsunami of entrepreneurship. A tsunami. They cannot handle it. The current structure that we’re dealing with now is outdated and cannot handle what’s going on in college athletics.”

That's hard to argue with. There is no framework to deal with that tsunami, and given the NCAA’s traditionally bureaucratic, hide-bound approach, it’s hard to imagine significant reform in a timely manner.

So then the question becomes: stay or go and try something new?