WWE has announced that it has “signed” Olympic Gold Medalist and college wrestling champion Gable Steveson. But the deal isn’t what most would expect. The deal is taking advantage of the NCAA’s new “Name, Image, Likeness (NIL)” rules and will allow the champion amateur wrestler to return to college and defend his title.

NIL deals have been all the rage but this is a first for a major company to hire an athlete and still allow them to compete as an amateur. WWE being an entertainment company most likely makes the deal possible but it will be interesting to see if other professional sports leagues, such as UFC or the big four, will follow suit.

More as it becomes available…

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