The biggest name in women’s college basketball, UConn star Paige Buecker, has signed a multi-year name, image and likeness partnership agreement with StockX, a global e-commerce marketplace for sneakers, toys, electronics and clothing, the company said on Wednesday.
As reported by ESPN, this is the first so-called NIL deal for the sophomore superstar. There was radio silence around Bueckers after she filed a trademark application for her nickname, “Paige Buckets”, and signed with Wasserman Media Group and noted WNBA agent Linsay Kagawa Colas to represent her in all NIL negotiations.
StockX intends to market the Bueckers as “the centerpiece” of StockX’s foray into women’s sports and basketball according to ESPN. It’s an agreement that would include the marketing of exclusive products that Bueckers will help design. She will also have unlimited access to clothing and trainers to wear off the field.
“My partnership with StockX is about fairness and authenticity,” Bueckers told ESPN. “This is (a) product that I love and highlight all the creatives who drive culture. I’m here to celebrate them and, with StockX, invest in ensuring that women and female athletes are prioritized, uplifted and recognized for their style and leadership.
According to the company, in 2019, sales of exclusive women’s sneakers “exceeded the overall market” by 80%. With Bueckers as the face of their business, StockX hopes to fill and dominate this exclusive sneaker market.
Another stipulation in the deal will include StockX prioritizing its investment in female athletes. According to reports, StockX will collate and provide detailed data and information to validate the idea that female athletes can generate interest and impact sales for global partners. The brand will also work with Bueckers on community initiatives she is passionate about, such as showcasing black women and BIPOC creatives in everything she does.
According to Opendorse, who made a deal with UConn’s sports department to help student-athletes navigate the new NIL landscape, Bueckers was worth an estimate. $ 382,000 per year at last spring’s NCAA tournament. Bueckers is highly followed on social media, with over a million combined Instagram and Tik Tok subscribers.
Buecker’s deal with StockX was announced simultaneously with his teammate and best friend, Azzi Fudd. The first-year guard revealed on Instagram that she is an ambassador and capital partner for sports drink company BioSteel.
Fudd has been busy on the NIL front, joining Chipotle as an ambassador for their “Real Food for Real Athletes” platform and appearing on a Tik Tok commercial with Allen Iverson and Ty Lue.
Buecker and Fudd will make their regular season debuts on Sunday against Arkansas.