Art Chansky’s Sports Notebook is presented by The Casual Pint. YOUR place for delicious pub food paired with local beer. Choose among 35 rotating taps and 200+ beers in the cooler.

Here is when it really gets interesting with NIL.

On Wednesday, the Overtime Elite League in Atlanta announced that four players have entered into an agreement with adidas to utilize their name-image-likeness as brand ambassadors.

One of them is 6-5 shooting sensation and 5-star athlete Ian Jackson, who is from New York City but transferred to play his senior season for the eight-team Overtime schedule of games between the best 16- to 20-year-olds in America.

Jackson, of course, is one of the crown jewels in Hubert Davis’ 2024 recruiting class, and he has said repeatedly he will be playing for the Tar Heels next season, along with Drake Powell, his fellow 5-star signee from Pittsboro Northwood.

No matter what Jackson is paid by adidas, he cannot wear their shoes or any of their apparel when he is on the court for the Tar Heels or at any official UNC function, because Carolina has been and will likely forever be a Nike school.

No one at Overtime Elite, adidas or Nike has answered queries about what, if anything, Jackson can do to promote adidas while he is a student in Chapel Hill. NIL deals are supposed to be “separate” from any school.

Because of that, can Jackson show up at an adidas NIL event at a high school or a restaurant or a business that sells adidas shoes and swag? Can he be known as a Tar Heel to his vast legion of followers of his on his social media posts and promote adidas?

Eric Wise, adidas General Manager of Global Basketball said in the official release. “The partnership with Overtime Elite and the integration of these talented young hoopers into the adidas family empowers us to champion the future leaders of basketball and reaffirms our pledge to the sport’s advancement. We are immensely proud to foster a collaborative environment that not only equips athletes with performance-driven adidas products but propels them to success beyond the court.”

So far, NIL deals signed by star athletes haven’t created this kind of conflict.

Certainly, Jackson can wear adidas sneakers and shoe-ware all he wants when not representing Nike through the Tar Heels. Adidas won’t like this, but perhaps Nike will ask Jackson to pull a Michael Jordan (from the 1992 Olympics) when he covered up the Games official sponsor Reebok logo on his warm-up suit while accepting his gold medal.

And we have to assume that, as soon as he leaves UNC, Jackson will sign a mega-million-dollar deal with adidas, which is the main reason Nike sponsors so many colleges and makes athletes wear their shoes on the court and on TV.

Like so many other aspects of NIL, we shall see.


Featured image via 247 Sports

Art Chansky is a veteran journalist who has written ten books, including best-sellers “Game Changers,” “Blue Bloods,” and “The Dean’s List.” He has contributed to WCHL for decades, having made his first appearance as a student in 1971. His “Sports Notebook” commentary airs daily on the 97.9 The Hill WCHL and his “Art’s Angle” opinion column runs weekly on Chapelboro. does not charge subscription fees, and you can directly support our efforts in local journalism here. Want more of what you see on Chapelboro? Let us bring free local news and community information to you by signing up for our newsletter.