By Brad Meyer | Published 08/26/2022 | USF Bulls Athletics
The Bulls Pen (TheBullsPen,.com) announced a name, image, likeness (NIL) agreement with South Florida football players Antonio Grier, Jr. and Brian Battie. Both accepted on Thursday, August 25, and will carry out this relationship throughout the 2022 season.
This came around after much discussion of NIL impacts and benefits in the college landscape. Back in May, it came to fruition in the form of a site "crowdfund" effort to support players with NIL compensation. Dozens of The Bulls Pen members stepped up to support the players with donations to the fund. The fundraising effort ended in July and work started to build relationships and scope out NIL responsibilities with a goal of completing before the season begins.
Antonio and Brian were two of the first contacted and became the first to accept. Both have joined the message board and have begun work in different ways to grow their brand.
Antonio Grier, Jr. is a product of Atlanta, Georgia and is a graduate student athlete playing his final season at South Florida. He plays the the linebacker position and is a leader on defense. Last season Antonio was named Second Team American Athletic All-Conference among other accolades including Pro Football Network First Team All-Conference.
He started all 12 games and totaled a team leading 92 tackles. There are not many linebackers that can cover sideline to sideline like Antonio. A combination of strength and speed, you'll see him wherever the ball is. He also led the team with eight tackles for loss and three sacks.
Antonio is a 2022 Phil Steele Preseason All-AAC First Team selection and and Athlon Preseason All-AAC First Team selection. The Bulls Pen will be cheering Antonio on to further success! You can follow Antonio on Twitter at @Burnowt5, Instagram @bigplay5 and of course TheBullsPen.com
Brian is sophomore running back and kick returner from Sarasota, Florida. He enters his sophomore season as an All-American after having received recognition in that regard from many outlets including Walter Camp, Phil Steele and Pro Football Focus.
A speedster that sees the field well, Brian made an impression from both the running back position and on special teams. Most memorable was Brian's two kickoff return touchdowns against Houston on November 6. He broke famed Bulls great J.R. Reed's kick return average for a season with a 32.5 average. He also ran for 324 yards, averaging 5.6 yards per carry in a crowded backfield. Doing it all, Brian also caught eight passes for 62 yards.
Brian's 2022 preseason accolades include being named a Phil Steele, Athlon and ESPN Preseason First Team All-American. Brian also is named Preseason First Team American Athletic All-Conference by Phil Steele and Athlon.
You can follow Brian on Twitter at @battie941, Instagram @brian.1k and TheBullsPen.com.