What’s next for Topps’ trading cards may mean big money for college athletes.
After the sports apparel brand, Fanatics, acquired Topps, it seems as though the collectibles powerhouse has developed an interest in some of the most talented and upcoming athletes: college students! They are launching a line of trading cards featuring student-athletes from more than 150 schools this fall. Notable names from this collaboration are members of the Power Five Conference, including Alabama and Texas A&M.

College logos have never been used before on trading cards, and this development can only be attributed to student-athletes’ desire to recreate the same direct interaction with fans that they experienced growing up with Topps baseball cards and their favorite MLB athletes.

The collaboration is not only intended to attract new collectors, but also to create appealing opportunities for student-athletes and their teams. Deals are estimated to bring in up to five figures for these athletes, however they also vary based on the player’s position and other factors such as where they are expected to be drafted.
Besides obvious monetary gains, these deals will also help strengthen Fanatics’ relationship with these upcoming players and help them to establish their brand networks and influence early-on in their professional careers.

Although we cannot say for certain how this collaboration will shift the nature of college sports, these deals will surely bring many new opportunities for student-athletes across the country.

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Fanatics strikes deal with colleges, student athletes to launch Topps cards (cnbc.com)
Fanatics And Topps Announce Historic College Trading Card Deal With Over 100 University Partnerships (yahoo.com)
Topps could shape the future of college sports | The College Fix

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