Jaden Rashada to Arizona State: How NIL fallout from Florida led to QB signing with Sun Devils

Jaden Rashada to Arizona State: How NIL fallout from Florida led to QB signing with Sun Devils

Jaden Rashada, the highest-rated unsigned quarterback remaining in the Class of 2023, committed to Arizona State on National Signing Day.

Rashada’s commitment to the Sun Devils ends the long and messy recruitment of the Pittsburg, Calif. native, which saw him sign with Florida on the promise of a massive NIL deal that ultimately fell through. He then requested his release from the Gators, opening the door for him to ultimately choose Arizona State.

The quarterback announced his decision to play in Tempe via Twitter, citing the importance of ASU being the school of his childhood dreams and the alma mater of his father, Harlen Rashada:

Forks up to 4L! 🔱🆙! #Home @KennyDillingham pic.twitter.com/lld1QZc3tJ

— Jaden Rashada 5️⃣ (@jadenrashada) February 1, 2023

MORE: College football signing day, top rookies and classes for the early signing period

Here’s everything you need to know about Rashada’s commitment to the Sun Devils, and how he was preempted by a failed NIL deal from Florida, who originally signed him:

Why did Jaden Rashada join Arizona State?

As young Rashada mentioned in his announcement, the state of Arizona holds emotional significance for him and his family. This led to him signing with the Sun Devils, which was a huge recruiting win for freshman coach Kenny Dillingham.

Rashada, rated the No. 7 quarterback and No. 82 player in 247Sports’ revamped overall rankings, is the Sun Devils’ only four-star commitment in this class, as well as their only player in the top 100. With that, Arizona State’s class moved up to the 47th class in the cycle.

Rashada’s commitment to Arizona State follows failed attempts by Miami and Florida to sign the four-star quarterback. In particular, Florida’s announced promise of a $13 million NIL deal that ultimately fell through is the single most important factor in Rashada’s commitment to the state of Arizona.

BENDER: Early signing day winners and losers: Alabama fights back with No. 1 class, Deion Sanders continues to ramp up

What happened to Rashada’s NIL deal in Florida?

According to a report by The Athletic, Rashada and Florida’s NIL Collective – called the Gator Collective – agreed on November 10, 2022 to a NIL deal worth $13 million. After signing the contract, Rashada flipped his commitment from Miami to Florida; it is speculated that he committed to Miami in June on the promise of a $9 million NIL deal with the Hurricanes.

The Athletic reports that, on December 7, 2022 – two weeks before the first signing period – Gator Collective CEO Eddie Rojas sent a termination letter regarding Rashada’s contract, with the outlet noting “there is conflicting accounts of why the deal fell apart and who signed up to pay what.” The Athletic also reported that this was the first time certain members of the Florida Athletic Department had been told what had been promised by the third-party collective NIL.

Rashada still signed with the Gators early in the signing period and congratulated Florida coach Billy Napier and fellow Under Armor All-America game signers. However, he was not among the early registrants scheduled to report to the Gainesville campus in Florida.

He finally asked for a release from his scholarship to Florida on January 17, which the school accepted. The Athletic again reported that the impetus for his release stemmed from tensions between the Rashada family and the Florida NIL collective over the $13 million contract.

With that, Rashada opted to sign with Arizona State as a legacy freshman. It’s unclear if NIL was a factor in his signing to Tempe.

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