College football 5-star recruit reportedly getting 7-figure deal
Los Alamitos (Calif.) quarterback Malachi Nelson is considered the No. 2 recruit in the class of 2023. He initially committed to play for Lincoln Riley and Oklahoma in July. Riley, of course, left Norman to take the job at USC, and unsurprisingly, Nelson flipped his recruitment to the Trojans just days later.
On Tuesday, Nelson inked an NIL deal worth “nearly a million dollars” with The h.wood Group, he told ESPN’s Pete Thamel.
The h.wood Group is “a Los Angeles-based global hospitality firm with more than 30 restaurants and clubs worldwide that are frequented by boldfaced names like Drake and the Kardashians,” Thamel writes. Its co-founders graduated from USC.
California is among the states that permit such NIL deals to be made with high-schoolers, meaning that Nelson is among the first of what could be a long line of recruits in the Golden State to take advantage of such opportunities.
“It’s cool to be a part of it and be at the front of everything that’s happening, especially in the high school space,” he told Thamel. “It’s good to get to this point where people are getting rewarded for what they do. It’s amazing to be at the front of it.”
And Nelson hopes that a lucrative professional career is in his future once his time with USC is complete.
“At the end of the day, we’re chasing the NFL and that second contract when you really get paid, he said. “All of this is lining up to get to that point.”