Videos by OutKick
Name, Image and Likeness has drastically changed collegiate athletics forever, and it allows athletes like Anthony Leal to change their lives. Or, in this case, the lives of others.
Leal, a 6-foot-5 junior guard at Indiana University Bloomington, has played for the Hoosiers since 2020. He was Indiana’s Mr. Basketball as a senior at Bloomington South High School and has found a lot of opportunities to profit from NIL opportunities in his home town.
Rather than keeping that money for himself, Leal gave his sister the Christmas gift of a lifetime.
Anthony Leal used his Name, Image and Likeness money to pay off his sister’s student loan debt.
The emotional moment was captured by their mom, Sherry, and shared to Twitter. It begins with Anthony’s sister, Lauren, opening a Christmas card from her brother that was full of kind words.
She didn’t think much of it at first.
“You have a spark of goodness that brought into the world, you radiate kindness and bring happiness to so many people, especially me,” the card read. “Hey sis, I wanted to let you know how much I look up to you and admire who you are. Your soul is beautiful, and you are the best role model ever.”
At that point, Lauren was emotional, but unaware of what was to come next.
“There is no doubt that I have made it to where I am today because of you. Someone like you deserves no burdens or restrictions in life, and I feel like the best way to help you with that is by—”
It clicked. Lauren looked at Anthony, “I don’t even know how much that is.”
Well, Anthony did. He had paid off all of her student loan debt. Every last dollar.
“I do,” he replied. “It’s zero now.”
Lauren, with shock and a smile on her face, was in disbelief. College is paid for.
There are a myriad of issues that have stemmed from Name, Image and Likeness. However, many college athletes who were previously shackled by the guise of amateurism are more empowered and financially stable than ever. And it allowed for Leal to pay off his sister’s debt.
As Leal said on Twitter:
“Some folks have negative opinions about NIL. But without it, things like this wouldn’t be possible…”
NIL is a good thing and it’s moments like this that are the best outcome!