On Friday, the University of Michigan and the Michigan Army National Guard announced a NIL partnership for a recruitment campaign with approximately 120 student-athletes.
It didn’t take long for things to lift off with the agreement as several Michigan Wolverines including Donovan Edwards, Braiden McGregor, Jace Howard, Cade McNamara, J.J. McCarthy and Blake Corum took to the skies in Blackhawk and Chinook helicopters that left from Grand Ledge and circled past the Big House:
Michigan football players taking off in the Blackhawk helicopters. The first group is flying for over an hour and will swing over the Big House in Ann Arbor. pic.twitter.com/CLfXXUA5zN— Tom VanHaaren (@TomVH) July 15, 2022
The group was bussed to the Grand Ledge Armory where they were met by the Belmont Armory 126th Army Band playing “Hail to the Victors.” They also heard remarks from U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Paul D. Rogers and had several photo opportunities on and near the aircrafts. From there, they met other citizen-soldiers and participated in helicopter simulator training as well.
Valiant, a sports-marketing agency associated with the University of Michigan, secured the deal for the student-athletes. The organization is led by two former Wolverines — Jared Wangler and Niko Porikos.
Our friends from the Blue By Ninety podcast were along for the ride and shared some more photos and videos:
This is all in an effort to bring awareness and spread recruitment efforts for the Michigan Army National Guard.
All in all, this is a really cool NIL opportunity for the U-M student-athletes who may have not had this happen to them otherwise.