Olivia Dunne makes a ton of money through NIL deals, but not everybody is on board with how she gets these deals.
This week, The New York Times published an article, “New Endorsements for College Athletes Resurface an Old Concern: Sex Sells,” which chronicled Dunne’s growing social media profile and bottom line.
Dunne, who boasts more than two million Instagram followers, frequently shares photos of herself on the platform, where she can be seen modeling everyday wear, swimsuits, or her LSU leotards.
The article questioned if Dunne was going about things the right way.
“Female college athletes are making millions thanks to their large social media followings. But some who have fought for equity in women’s sports worry that their brand building is regressive,” it reads.
Legendary Stanford women’s basketball coach Tara VanDerveer called it a “step back” for women’s sports.
“I guess sometimes we have this swinging pendulum, where we maybe take two steps forward, and then we take a step back,” she told The New York Times in a recent interview. “We’re fighting for all the opportunities to compete, to play, to have resources, to have facilities, to have coaches, and all the things that go with Olympic-caliber athletics.”
Dunne, a junior going into the 2023 season, has one of the largest social media followings of any collegiate athlete across any sport male or female. She reportedly earns around $2 million with various sponsorships.
Dunne boasts more than 6.2 million followers on TikTok and 2.3 million followers on Instagram.
Many may hate the way she gets money, but the 20-year-old isn’t going anywhere. Dunne told the paper she is proud of what she has been able to accomplish.
“Seven figures,” she said. “That is something I’m proud of. Especially since I’m a woman in college sports. There are no professional leagues for most women’s sports after college.”
Dunne has made the SEC’s First-Year Academic Honor Roll and was a WCGA Academic All-American as well. She was a WCGA All-American in the uneven bars and, in 2022, was named to the SEC Academic Honor Roll.
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