For Brands

Insights from 1,000+ Gen Z student-athletes on mental health, NIL and more

Nearly two-thirds of MarketPryce athletes said they prefer brands that focus on supporting Mental Health efforts.

March 28, 2024

University of Virginia football players celebrate after winning a competition hosted by MarketPryce.

We’re proud to share this milestone: More than 1,000 opted-in student-athletes have joined the MarketPryce roster.

The interests, hobbies and values student-athletes share through various MarketPryce surveys help drive quality Matches for brands like Juara (95% Match Rate) and Live Fluid (78%). 

Here are some insights as you consider how student-athletes might align with your brand’s marketing efforts.

Mental health hits home with student-athletes

The most striking takeaway is tied to mental health: More than 63% of MarketPryce student-athletes prefer name, image and likeness (NIL) partnerships with companies that prioritize mental health.

This comes as no surprise as both women (44%) and men (17%) reported during the 2022-23 academic year that they felt overwhelmed by their responsibilities as student-athletes.

Brands: Your first 3 matches are on us. Try MarketPryce today.

The annual NCAA Mental Health and Wellness study shows that student-athletes struggle with anxiety, overwhelm and sadness. These numbers have, fortunately, fallen since reaching a peak during COVID-19.

If you’re a brand interested in supporting mental health initiatives, you’ll find passionate partners in student-athletes. 

Student-athletes are looking for healthy options

More than 62% of MarketPryce student-athletes prefer brands that are Health-Conscious. 

This tees up better-for-you brands for authentic partnerships with the most fit and athletic students on any given campus.

Additionally, when asked what verticals they're most excited to work within:

  • 85% said Fitness
  • 71% said Food & Beverage 
  • 67% said Wellness 

Cooking, shopping and hiking lead off free time activities

While most student-athletes are strapped for time – our data reflects this as the most common answer to “How do you spend your free time?” is “What free time?” – they still make room for hobbies. 

At 35% of respondents, cooking was the most popular free time activity among MarketPryce student-athletes. 


  • 32% enjoy Shopping
  • 28% enjoy Hiking
  • 25% enjoy Traveling
  • 18% enjoy Yoga
  • 15% enjoy Reading

Personality shines through

We believe who athletes are off the field is more important than the sport they play or school they go to.

So we asked: "What's your teammate vibe?"

It helps us understand how athletes view themselves and, importantly, sets them up to match with the brands that have aligned ethos.

  • 31% identify as Team Captains, always ready to lead
  • 30% say they're the Funny Ones, always cracking jokes
  • 20% call themselves Academic All-Americans, locked into studies
  • 12% call themselves the One With Style, in other words: their pre-game fits go hard

MarketPryce shares regular Impact Questions with student-athletes to better understand who they are outside of sport. If you’re interested in learning more about Gen Z student-athletes or how your brand resonates with them, let us know. We’d be happy to help you connect directly with student-athletes for this valuable feedback.

MARKETPRYCE MAKES it easy for brands and student-athletes to form authentic partnerships. Get started today.