Mississippi State pledge Troutman agrees to NIL deal
By Jeff Strange
Henderson County (KY) senior OF/1B Taylor Troutman has agreed to a Name Image Likeness (NIL) deal with The Collective Engine and Top Gun Events. Troutman, who is committed to play for Mississippi State upon high school graduation currently stars for Top Gun National 18u, coached by Bob Turner.
The NCAA enacted the name, image, and likeness (NIL) policy on July 1, 2021. Student-athletes are now free to enter into any endorsement deals for their name, image, and likeness as they see fit. The Collective Engine (TCE) helps athletes pilot a route forward — with sponsorship, licensing, social media, and personal branding — that helps athletes maximize their overall value. The Collective Engine announced a partnership with Top Gun Events in August 2023 as an avenue to help support student-athletes with their NIL objectives.
Troutman has indicated that she has submitted a list of brands to The Collective Engine that she is hopeful to work with and promote through social media outlets. Some of the brands range from sports apparel, clothing lines, water bottle companies, skin care brands, restaurants and of course, softball equipment and products.
In the meantime, Troutman stays active and busy with her softball schedule along with playing an active role with children in her community.
“Kids are my passion,” said Troutman. “I’m planning to major in elementary education and special education. I’m currently a peer tutor in my high school and help teach the special needs program. I also teach pre-school for two hours a day – I love working with children!”
Teaching pre-school. High school. National level travel softball. College on the horizon. There’s a lot on the plate for Troutman. She recognizes a great support system through her family, coaches and faith.
“My family has been very supportive every step of the way for me,” said Troutman. “My dad is actually my high school team’s coach – we’ve grown a ton together. My mom travels with me a lot to our tournaments and is always supporting me. Coach Bob (Turner) has been a great mentor for me; I probably wouldn’t even be on this call if it wasn’t for all the support that he’s provided along the way. I also turn to prayer and my faith to help me with the mental side of everything in life – not just softball.”
With a bright outlook on life and a strong presence on the field, in the classroom and her community, Troutman exudes a positive image that fits well with any promotions of brands that she hopes to partner with. She acknowledges that she is happy that she has signed her NIL deal with The Collective Engine and Top Gun Events.
“Getting this NIL deal signed relieves a lot of stress for when I get to college,” said Troutman. “With classes, softball, workouts all on the horizon, it’s very exciting that this is set and I know what to expect.”