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IOWA CITY — If you were surfing around Twitter last week you may have stumbled across this and gotten a giggle from it.

It was a 34-second video that showed Iowa basketball player Patrick McCaffery dancing around, alternately flashing a pizza box, flipping a basketball and twirling pizzas to a song extolling the virtues of Falbos Bros. Pizza.

One of McCaffery’s Hawkeye teammates, Kris Murray, referred to it as “commercial genius’’ but also noted that the song “was stuck in my head for a couple of days.’’

Expect to see a lot more of these sorts of things as time goes on. College athletes are now entitled to make money from their name, image and likeness, and it’s probably going to happen a lot in the Iowa basketball program, which includes one of the leading activists of the NIL movement.

For what it’s worth, McCaffery admitted his song and dance may have been a tad hokey. Some of his teammates said as much.

“I got a lot of crap for it, but I also got a lot of money for it so they can’t say anything bad about that,’’ he said. “I said ‘You guys would have done it, too, for the money.’’’

What did his father, Iowa head coach Fran McCaffery, think of the video?

“My first reaction was ‘How much did they pay you?’’’ the coach said. “When I heard the number, I was, like, I'd probably do a dance, too. So good for him.’’

The NCAA resisted the concept of NIL for a long time, but Fran McCaffery long ago thought it was a good idea.

“I fully supported NIL from the very beginning,’’ he said. “It's great to see those guys making money. I hope they make more, they make as much as they possibly can.

“I do think there's a fine line with getting in the gym and getting in the weight room and understanding the focus that's required to be the best player that you can be, because a lot of the NIL stuff is social media-driven. So it requires you to be on social media, which I don't have a problem with because our guys have made pretty good decisions there.

“But that can't become the number one focus, especially when we start playing games. But I don't have any worry whatsoever that our guys will lose focus on what they're supposed to be doing, and I fully support them in their pursuit to make as much money as they can.’’

Iowa senior Jordan Bohannon has been at the forefront of the movement to secure NIL rights for all college athletes from the very beginning and he sees no negatives to it now that it’s here.

“Here’s a news flash for some people: College athletes have been paid money for quite a while now,’’ Bohannon said.

He referenced Blue Chips, a 1994 film in which a fictitious college basketball program trashes the rules by paying a few high-profile recruits. While NIL isn’t remotely the same as what happened in the film, Bohannon’s point is that unscrupulous athletic programs have been finding ways to compensate athletes for a long time.

“It wasn’t a fairy tale movie,’’ Bohannon said. “That stuff actually happened … We’re just getting our fair market value now.’’

Bohannon already has dove into NIL ventures himself. He made a paid personal appearance at a fireworks store the first day NIL was legalized, on July 1, and he has done internet ads for a local car wash, among other things.

“I don’t really care what anyone thinks,’’ he said. “I’m a sixth-year senior here now. They can say what they want.’’

Bohannon feels he and Rutgers guard Geo Baker and Michigan forward Isaiah Livers did a great service for college athletics by lobbying so hard for NIL and he admits the approval of NIL contributed to his decision to return to the Hawkeyes for a sixth season.

“Me and Geo weren’t even thinking about coming back to college until everything kind of happened in late April and May,’’ he said, quickly adding that this isn’t something he did for himself.

“We wanted to help the college athlete as a whole,’’ he said. “Every time I scroll through Twitter I see a new deal being done by someone across the country and I love it because that’s everything that we fought for.

“There’s no jealousy. I’m not getting jealous about Patrick doing a Falbos commercial that’s hilarious. It’s what we fought for. It’s what I fought for. I want all my guys around me to be happy and make money, and that’s what we’re doing.’’

While NIL isn’t really supposed to be used as a recruiting ploy, Fran McCaffery said it’s inevitable that it is going to be used that way.

He said almost every potential recruit has asked about NIL opportunities at Iowa.

“There are some rules that are in place that should be followed,’’ he said. “But as we've all seen, the NIL-to-pay-for-play line is blurred. It's not supposed to be pay-for-play. It's supposed to be NIL.

“So are we moving to that end? We just pay the guys, whatever? Those are questions. People just want to know: Are guys making any money? Are guys having opportunities? And they are. And I hope that they become more abundant.’’

Patrick McCaffery said it not only has been lucrative but also sort of fun.

When his Falbos commercial hit the internet, his phone began bouncing.

“It blew up,’’ he said. “I was getting texts, Snapchats, Twitter, everything. My phone was going crazy.’’

This article originally ran on qctimes.com.

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