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Rachel Glenn will have a legitimate chance of making Team USA’s roster for the Olympic Games in Paris next summer, but she has a high jump title to defend on the collegiate level first. And she will do so for/with a new program.
Glenn, who won the SEC Outdoor Championship with South Carolina in 2021, followed it up by clearing 6-foot-4 to win a national championship just a few weeks later. That was as a freshman.
Although the 2022 season wasn’t quite as successful for Glenn, it was still dominant enough to earn First-Team All-American honors in both the indoor and outdoor seasons. Unfortunately, an injury derailed her second opportunity to reclaim her title in 2023.
Now, with her senior season in sight, Glenn will try to return to the mountaintop ahead of the 2024 U.S. Olympic Trials in June. She will do so with the Razorbacks.
Rachel Glenn transferred from South Carolina to Arkansas.
Glenn entered the transfer portal in May and received offers from every top track and field program in the country overnight. Her options were infinite.
Glenn ultimately opted to take her time with the decision and get it right. Visits to Arkansas, Florida, LSU and Oregon, among others, most prominently piqued her interest.
In the end, on Tuesday night, Rachel Glenn announced that she will join the program in Fayetteville.
The Razorbacks’ ability to get her ready for Team USA’s Olympic Trials was a big factor in her decision. As was NIL.
Two different approaches to NIL came into the equation.
With more than 25,000 followers on Instagram, Glenn’s social media presence is not insignificant for any collegiate athlete, let alone a high jumper. It has led her to partnerships with Celsius and Clean Energy in the past, as well as WWE’s ‘Next in Line’ Class of 2022.
While seeking her next opportunity, Glenn wanted to find the program that could best support her NIL endeavors. She spoke with Pete Nakos of On3 about her decision and said that South Carolina failed her in that department.
In her opinion, the Gamecocks focused all of their NIL efforts on football on basketball. Nothing else.
One of the reasons I was getting frustrated with the NIL collective at South Carolina was I kept asking and asking for help with NIL deals and brand deals, but they literally spent all their attention on basketball and football. So going on other visits and going to other schools, I’m noticing how their collective focuses on all sports, not just football and basketball.— Rachel Glenn, via Pete Nakos of On3 Sports
As Glenn began to explore her options, she found that there was secrecy regarding NIL at some schools. Others were quick to discuss finances.
In the end, it was Arkansas that impressed Rachel Glenn the most — both on the track and in terms of NIL opportunities. The Razorbacks, who finished third at the 2023 Outdoor Championships, stepped up in a big way and added a First-Team All-American high jumper to their already loaded roster.