H&R Block Announces Team Roster of Female Athletes to Champion Equity in College Sports

March 24, 2022

America’s most trusted tax preparation company is providing sponsorship dollars and tax support for team of top female college athletes across the country to give them “A Fair Shot” at NIL sponsorship deals

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (March 24, 2022) – As part of its previously announced “A Fair Shot” program, H&R Block (NYSE: HRB) today announced a roster of top female college athletes the company is partnering with to help close the gap of disparity between men and women in name, image and likeness (NIL) sponsorship deals. The program provides sponsorship dollars and tax support for a growing cohort of female athletes who are joining forces with H&R Block to create a catalyst for women’s equity in college sports.

H&R Block kicked off its “A Fair Shot” program with Caitlin Clark, basketball player for the University of Iowa who recently won 2022 Big Ten Player of the Year, and Zia Cooke, basketball player for the University of South Carolina. In addition to Clark and Cooke, H&R Block is partnering with female college athletes across several sports, school sizes, locations, and race and ethnic backgrounds to amplify the importance of giving women a fair shot.

“We’re all going through the same things right now, getting more people to watch our games, support us and I think that’s the biggest thing we’re fighting for and want to continue to push and bring more awareness to women and college athletics,” Clark said.

Sedona Prince, basketball player for the University of Oregon, who sparked a national conversation on the disparities between men and women in college sports last year, is now also lending her voice to “A Fair Shot.”

“It’s great to be working with a partner like H&R Block that is actively standing up for women’s sports and calling attention to the inequities we face. H&R Block is giving me an even bigger platform than what I’ve had to call attention to new NIL deals and the opportunities women in college sports are missing out on,” Prince said.

The current roster now includes the following athletes:

  • Lauren Burke – University of Texas, softball
  • Caitlin Clark – University of Iowa, basketball
  • Emily Cole – Duke University, track and field
  • Jayda Coleman – University of Oklahoma, softball
  • Zia Cooke – University of South Carolina, basketball
  • Jordan Chiles – University of California, Los Angeles, gymnastics
  • Jaiden Fields – University of Georgia, softball
  • Montana Fouts – University of Alabama, softball
  • Sarah Fuller – University of North Texas, soccer
  • Grace McCallum – University of Utah, gymnastics
  • Jaden Owens – Baylor University, basketball
  • Audrey Nourse – University of Southern California, volleyball
  • Nicole Nourse – University of Southern California, volleyball
  • Ayoka Lee – Kansas State University, basketball
  • Sedona Prince – University of Oregon, basketball
  • Lexi Rodriguez – University of Nebraska, volleyball
  • Masai Russell – University of Kentucky, track and field
  • Trinity Thomas – University of Florida, gymnastics
  • Reilyn Turner – University of California, Los Angeles, soccer

“This partnership with H&R Block gives me a platform to talk about women’s sports and women’s equity in sports, two topics I’m super passionate about. I love being able to spread awareness about and advocate for our sports, teams and talent, and the need to invest in female college athletes,” Fields said.

This year marks the first tax season after the NCAA began allowing college athletes to profit from their NIL. But third-party data shows female athletes are receiving fewer sponsorship opportunities and lower compensation than their male peers. H&R Block has stepped in to help make sure female college athletes get every dollar they deserve. In addition to sponsorships, the company is also providing tax preparation services to help sponsored athletes manage key tax decisions that result from this new income.

“I have a lot of people in my corner helping me out, including H&R Block being the first to help me with my taxes, just showing me the pathway of what it’s like to become a businesswoman,” Cooke said.

“When we first saw the news allowing college athletes to profit from their NIL, we knew that new income would create new tax questions for student athletes that they had never had to think about before,” said H&R Block President and CEO Jeff Jones. “As we looked at this closely, we saw the disparity between sponsorships for women and men and took action to provide help to close that gap. We created the H&R Block A Fair Shot program to not only sponsor female college athletes across sports and schools, but also provide tax help.”

More information on H&R Block’s commitment to equity in women’s college sports is available at hrblock.com/afairshot, along with an online resource hub of information for all college athletes navigating NIL tax implications.

About H&R Block

H&R Block, Inc. (NYSE: HRB) provides help and inspires confidence in its clients and communities everywhere through global tax preparation services, financial products, and small-business solutions. The company blends digital innovation with human expertise and care as it helps people get the best outcome at tax time and also be better with money using its mobile banking app, Spruce. Through Block Advisors and Wave, the company helps small-business owners thrive with innovative products like Wave Money, a small-business banking and bookkeeping solution, and the only business bank account to manage bookkeeping automatically. For more information, visit H&R Block News or follow @HRBlockNews on Twitter. 

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