Pride of Little Egypt: SIU Athletics Announces NIL Collective

Pride of Little Egypt

CARBONDALE – The Southern Illinois University Athletics Department is announcing the launch of its Name, Image and Likeness collective, Pride of Little Egypt.

The collective will support student-athletes in all 17 of SIU’s athletic programs. Alumni and friends can choose a monthly membership or a one-time contribution at

“We are thrilled about the direction of Saluki Athletics, and Pride of Little Egypt collective is a major piece of that bright future,” said Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Tim Leonard. “This is how we recruit and retain the best players and bring championships to Carbondale.”

Working with Student Athlete NIL (SANIL), Pride of Little Egypt will allow SIU’s student-athletes to leverage their name, image and likeness. Pride of Little Egypt will work in unison with various SIU supporters to create marketing plans that maximize student-athlete earnings while ensuring that the university’s best interests remain protected throughout.

“This is an opportunity for Saluki Nation to enhance our student-athletes’ experience. It’s one of the top factors in today’s college basketball environment,” said Saluki Men’s Basketball coach Scott Nagy.

Pride of Little Egypt is independent from Southern Illinois University, and the university does not receive any financial benefit from the collective. NCAA rules allow alumni, fans and other donors to compensate student-athletes through the collective, but such compensation:

  • may not be considered “pay for play,”
  • must be in exchange for services provided by the student-athlete, and
  • may not be a recruiting inducement for a student-athlete to enroll or continue to attend SIU.

“Our staff and student-athletes are thrilled about the possibilities provided by Pride of Little Egypt,” said Saluki Softball coach Jen Sewell. “Our recruits and current athletes are excited to advance their personal brand and connect with the SIU community.”

Saluki Athletics has recently experienced a run of high-level success, including the men’s golf team winning the Missouri Valley Conference championship; softball earning the MVC regular-season title; and two Saluki Football players signing NFL contracts.

Little Egypt, a nickname attributed to Southern Illinois about 200 years ago, was the inspiration for SIU’s choice of the saluki, the royal dog of Egypt, as its mascot in 1951.

Student-athletes are available to do social media posts, attend events, sign autographs or participate in a variety of other marketing activities. Potential partners should contact SANIL at

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