Billy Napier says Florida won’t get involved in NIL bidding wars


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Florida head football coach Billy Napier is the latest to comment on the NIL’s wilderness, saying Thursday that the Gators will not use NIL funding in any bidding wars.

“We don’t operate that way, if that makes sense,” Napier said, via Sports Illustrated. “I think NIL is part of the decision. I think a lot of times when you’re really wondering why the player is leaving where he is, there are other factors. All of these situations are on a case-by-case basis, you I have to assess each situation independently of all the others.”

Head Coach Jimbo Fisher of the Texas A&M Aggies speaks in midfield with Head Coach Nick Saban of the Alabama Crimson Tide at Bryant-Denny Stadium on September 22, 2018 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. The Crimson Tide beat the Aggies 45-23.
(Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)

Napier, 42, is entering his first year as a head coach at Florida, and is doing it with NIL the conference talk. Nick Saban of Alabama and Jimbo Fisher of Texas A&M took it to another level last week, during their public spat over each other’s programs.

Although Napier said that not all players will make decisions based on NIL, that doesn’t mean he won’t use it fully. Napier said he studied the NFL as a way to make sense of what’s happening in college football.

Florida head coach Billy Napier and quarterback Anthony Richardson talk Thursday during the Gators '  spring training in Gainesville, Florida.

Florida head coach Billy Napier and quarterback Anthony Richardson talk Thursday during the Gators ' spring training in Gainesville, Florida.
(Stephen M. Dowell/Orlando Sentinel/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)

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“There’s no playbook for that in college football,” Napier said. “I study the National Football League because I think there are things to learn. Every player on our team that hasn’t been traded before is a free agent every year. That’s the only thing that we only miss the National Football League.

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Luge will be tough for Napier in the SEC’s freshman year, with Florida finishing a 6-7 season in which Dan Mullen was awarded third place after a 5-6 start. Using NIL to his advantage could be a way to spark rebuilding in Gainesville, with Georgia and Alabama to compete.

Nick Saban, head coach of the Alabama Crimson Tide against the Georgia Bulldogs at Lucas Oil Stadium on January 10, 2022 in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Nick Saban, head coach of the Alabama Crimson Tide against the Georgia Bulldogs at Lucas Oil Stadium on January 10, 2022 in Indianapolis, Indiana.
(Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

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As the days go by, and the more we’re on the court the more we get out,” Napier said. “We get to know people, NIL is going to be a slam dunk for the Florida Gators. “


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