Mercury, the digital fan engagement platform focused on collegiate athletics, has launched clemsontigers.ioa custom site that will provide inside access to Clemson’s sports teams as well as digital collectibles.
As part of the three-year partnership, Clemsontigers.io will post team updates, host discussion forums and host virtual interactions between fans and athletes, many of whom are expected to eventually secure NIL agreements with the ‘company. Users can become VIPs by signing up for a 2022-2023 Tigers Membership Pass, which unlocks full online access to contests and a chance to rack up redeemable Tiger Points. The first 100 fans to register get their membership card for free.
“It’s something real that the university endorses – it’s a real Clemson platform,” Mercury CEO and co-founder Porter Grieve told SportTechie on Friday. “Because at the end of the day, the fans want to connect with the athletes.”
Clemson and Mercury also collaborate on NFTs that relate to the sports culture of the school. In a few weeks, clemsontigers.io will drop “Tombstone” digital collectibles reflecting the school’s custom of holding funeral ceremonies for ranked teams they have defeated on the road over the years, including victory of the 2014 Orange Bowl against ohio state.
“At Clemson, when the football team beats, I believe, the top 25 away opponents, they basically take that team and put them in the ground,” Grieve said. “And they have a cemetery on campus with all these headstones against Alabama and South Carolina [and 22 others]. It’s that incredibly fascinating unique thing that only Clemson does.
“So we’re doing a drop where we’ve digitized and reimagined headstones as digital collectibles, NFTs. And we’re doing a super limited drop, only 32 of them and the lucky fans who are there early and get one will be rewarded with amazing experiences year after year. So this year they’re doing this awesome thing where they can go to campus and roll down the hill and throw a basket and take a tour of the facilities, and we’ll be rewarding them with souvenirs as well. ”
Mercury, which debuted in 2021, has similar brand partnerships with Kansas (rockchalk.io), Kentucky (ukbluechips.io) and Central Florida (chargeon.xyz). In the coming weeks, they’ll be launching similar rigs for Oklahoma and Villanova, all with an eye on customization.
“In Kansas, we took the James Naismith Court at Phog Allen Fieldhouse, and we cut it into 100 pieces digitally and sold it in drops of five,” says Grieve. “And each sold out in less than three minutes. People may say, “I am one of 80 to 100 holders of this court piece. And we are excited to do this again for the football pitch and on other school pitches to have them compete to see the most valuable pitch. Like a [Kentucky’s] Rupp Arena.
No less than 85 student-athletes from the four affiliated schools have already signed NIL with Mercury. Former Penn State All-American football player Adam Breneman is Mercury’s Vice President of NIL and Media and will host long-running interviews with many of the schools’ players, such as the Kentucky quarterback . Will LevisKansas quarterback Milestone Daniels and UCF quarterback John Rhys Plumlee.
Grieve said the company’s goal is not just to focus on NFTs, but to personalize virtual fan engagement for each campus community.
“Clemson is different from Kansas, which is different from Kentucky and UCF,” Grieve said. “So each one requires some kind of tailored approach.”