Luka Garza Takes Historic Step; Becomes First College Player To Sell an NFT

Published 04/08/2021, 5:00 PM EDT
INDIANAPOLIS, IN – MARCH 13: Iowa Hawkeyes center Luka Garza (55) shoots from the outside during the men’s Big Ten tournament college basketball game between the Illinois Fighting Illini and Iowa Hawkeyes on March 13, 2021, at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, IN. (Photo by Zach Bolinger/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)


Luka Garza is heading straight into his post-college life. Now that his tenure with the Iowa Hawkeyes is over, Garza is monetizing his name and value ahead of a possible shift into the NBA. The first step to establishing his financial independence? Taking a dive into the waters of crypto-currency.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Garza is selling a non-fungible token, or NFT, to raise money for the University of Iowa’s children’s hospital. Garza spoke about why he made this decision and what drove him into this path.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

“I’m an economics major, so I’ve been following the tech world closely. And blockchain technology is something that really interests me. It’s something my dad was also in the tech world. With both of us talking about it and seeing other athletes do this, I saw this as a really cool and unique opportunity to start pushing my brand in.

“For me, it’s really important as well that some of these proceeds go to the University of Iowa’s children’s hospital. It’s something I’m very passionate about. So it’s for a good cause as well.”

Luka Garza: What does this mean for his future?

Luka Garza is just taking a page out of the book of NFL star Rob Gronkowski and MMA star Khabib Nurmagomedov. Considering how the popularity of NFTs are just rising right now, Garza is taking a smart step to enter the world with his own card. According to Yahoo, the NFT has already gone up to $8000 in value.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Mar 13, 2021; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; Iowa Hawkeyes center Luka Garza (55) reacts to the crowd after making a shot against the Illinois Fighting Illini in the first half at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

However, whoever buys this doesn’t just get the NFT. Garza has agreed to throw in a whole host of perks to incentivize people. The NFT comes with a signed pair of game-worn shoes, a private meditation session with Garza, and a lifetime pass to basketball camps hosted by the leading scorer in Iowa Hawkeyes history. Matter of fact, the in-game shoes in the deal are the shoes he wore when he broke that record.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

With NCAA players being allowed to profit from their likeness from August 2021, this could be a common path for some future NCAA stars. But Garza isn’t guaranteed a long NBA career, with him projected to be a second-round pick. Making these financial decisions will pay off in the long run.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE :

Ishaan Bhattacharya

1510 articles

Ishaan Bhattacharya is an NBA, NCAA Basketball, and Combat Sports writer at EssentiallySports. Currently, Ishaan is pursuing a Post Graduate Degree in Journalism from Xavier's Institute of Communication. Previously, Ishaan has written for The Indian Express, The Quint, Sportskeeda, and WrestleClub.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT