Perhaps no college athletes benefited as much from the Supreme Court’s ruling on NCAA athletes making money off their names, images and likenesses as much as twins Hanna and Haley Cavinder.
The duo, who have over 4.5 million followers on TikTok, raked in millions in endorsement deals after transferring to the University of Miami from Fresno State University.
But not everyone appreciated how they went about it.
Take, for instance, Stanford women’s basketball coach Tara VanDerveer.
“I guess sometimes we have this swinging pendulum, where we maybe take two steps forward, and then we take a step back,” VanderVeer told the New York Times about female athletes profiting off their looks. “We’re fighting for all the opportunities to compete, to play, to have resources, to have facilities, to have coaches, and all the things that go with Olympic-caliber athletics. This is a step back”
But what do the twins think?
“We’re 22-year-old girls,” Hanna says in an interview with writer Ethan Strauss for The Free Press,. “I love fitness. I like to showcase my body in a way that makes me feel confident.”
They also acknowledged that their looks have been a big part of their stardom.
“Obviously, everyone brings something different to the table. I think that all women should be empowered in a male-dominant world, especially minorities,” Haley said of the matter.
While Hanna also noted that the two have a leg up.
“I mean, obviously, yes, this is a touchy subject, but I think that we are privileged, in a way,” she said. “Obviously, we don’t deal with the same things that other women deal with or other people deal with, and that’s just how our world is, and it’s awful.”
Both twins helped Miami to its first ever women’s Elite Eight in 2023. And both are talented basketball players.
But one look at their social media pages shows why so many, especially young men, follow them.
You can’t really blame them for taking advantage of the way the world works. But it’s an interesting look into a complex problem for NCAA women’s athletics.