Oct 23, 2023
The San Diego State athletic department has agreed to a multi-year partnership with MESA Foundation to become the first NIL collective of SDSU athletics.
SAN DIEGO -- The San Diego State athletic department has agreed to a multi-year partnership with MESA Foundation to become the first name, image, and likeness (NIL) collective of SDSU athletics.
As an official partner, Mesa will have access to multi-media assets that will generate awareness and engagement for MESA. These assets will enable MESA to leverage official SDSU Aztec marks, logos and intellectual property for relevant NIL marketing purposes benefiting both Aztec men's and women's basketball.
"We are thrilled to work collaboratively with MESA Foundation as an official partner of SDSU Athletics," said San Diego State Director of Athletics John David Wicker. "We look forward to building relationships together in an effort to support SDSU student-athletes as we navigate these new waters in the collegiate landscape."
"The Aztec Community is used to the successes that we've seen on the court," said President of MESA Foundation Jeff Smith. "This new and official partnership comes at a pivotal time in a changing college environment and signifies the recognition and commitment of the University to ensure that continued success. MESA is all-in on continuing its mission of supporting San Diego State student-athletes in their pursuit of excellence on the court while broadening the connection with the community by creating unique ways for fans, alumni and the entire Aztec Nation to engage with SDSU student-athletes."
MESA's multi-year partnership with San Diego State athletics is designed to help the 501(c)(3) raise awareness and continue to connect with charitable organizations throughout the year. The added visibility will help build outreach and maintain relationships during critical periods of the basketball season, including marquee regular season matchups, conference and postseason tournaments.
"Our relationship with MESA Foundation has been beneficial for both our basketball program and the community," said SDSU men's basketball head coach Brian Dutcher. "Through the volunteer opportunities that are a cornerstone of the MESA Foundation's NIL model, our players give back to our community in a meaningful way. I'm happy that it will have an expanded relationship with the Department, which can only benefit our players and the community."
"The MESA Foundation has done a great job helping our student-athletes access NIL opportunities and I'm excited to see this partnership continue," said SDSU women's basketball head coach Stacie Terry-Hutson. "Our goal is to be champions on the court and role models in the community and the MESA Foundation has helped provide opportunities for our program to make a meaningful impact here in San Diego. We encourage our fans who are interested in supporting our student-athletes through NIL to consider the MESA Foundation."
MESA's mission is to raise awareness for charitable causes in San Diego by partnering local charities with Aztec student-athletes who choose to use their social media platforms and influence to bring awareness to organizations. This will help the San Diego community thrive while deepening the connection between San Diego and Aztec student-athletes.
Since its establishment in the fall of 2022, MESA student-athletes have supported the Walk for ALS in Mission Bay, The San Diego Food Bank where they handed out food to over 200 families and brought awareness to San Diego's underfed community. The MESA student-athletes also hosted youth basketball skills clinics for local Native American tribes through InterTribal Sports Program, another for military children at Camp Pendleton through Semper Fit Program and also at San Dieguito Boys and Girls Club. With the athlete's social media presence as well as their attendance at the Walk for ALS event, the organization exceeded its target raise by nearly $150,000 with a total of $439,000. Most recently MESA Foundation hosted a two-day Blood Drive on campus in partnership with the San Diego Blood Bank to drive awareness for Sickle Cell Awareness Month.
The San Diego State men's basketball team is coming off a run to the national championship game last season as the Aztecs became the first team in the Mountain West era to make an Elite Eight, Final Four or national title game. The Aztecs women's basketball team, meanwhile, won 23 games a year ago, had the best defense in the MW and made the WNIT.
The SDSU men's basketball team plays host to Cal State San Marcos in an open exhibition on Oct. 30 before hosting Cal State Fullerton for its official season opener at Steve Fisher Court at Viejas Arena on Nov. 6. The San Diego State women's basketball squad opens at Portland on Nov. 6 before hosting California Baptist on Nov. 10.
About MESA Foundation
MESA (Mentoring and Empowering Student Athletes) Foundation is a pioneering collective dedicated to amplifying student-athlete opportunities in the evolving NIL (Name, Image and Likeness) era. Through strategic partnerships, the foundation aims to provide unwavering support to SDSU Aztec student-athletes throughout their collegiate journey and beyond and focuses on building relationships between the student-athletes and the San Diego community.