When the world of NIL was introduced into college sports, it was the Texas A&M Aggies stealing all the headlines.
But now that’s no longer the case.
The rest of the college football world has since begin to catch up, and perhaps no school has made quite as much noise as the Miami Hurricanes.
The Canes initially offered a rumored $8 million to star quarterback prospect Jaden Rashada. They landed a pair of five-star offensive tackles in Francis Mauigoa and Samson Okunola, and they ended the 2023 recruiting cycle with the No. 8 overall class in the country according to 247Sports.
But Miami’s success didn’t stop there. It landed TikTok superstars and college basketball standout twins Hanna and Haley Cavinder in the transfer portal. That recruitment also landed the Canes level II violations via the NCAA.
How has Miami pulled this all off?
Thanks, in large part, to billionaire financier John Ruiz.
Ruiz went from rich to really, really rich when his company, LifeWallet, went public last year. Ruiz valued the company at $32 billion. But as it turns out, they number may have been off a bit.
The stock opened at $10 a according to Darren Rovell of The Action Network. That took Ruiz from millionaire status to billionaire status.
But as Rovell now reports, not all that glitters is gold.
Within nine days, LIFW would plummet to as low as $1 per share.
And after hovering between $1 and $2 per share for the past year, on March 13, LifeWallet dipped below $1 per share. The stock has stayed below that $1 threshold for the past two weeks.
After a firm trades below $1 for 30 days, Nasdaq can begin the process of delisting that company from its exchange.
“I am very strict and careful about saying anything that isn’t made public,” Ruiz told the Action Network about his company’s potential delisting.
Overall, LifeWallet is down 91% from its IPO price. The Nasdaq as a whole is up just under 18% year-to-date. – via The Action Network
LifeWallet makes the majority of its incoming via suing insurance companies for medical payouts that they should have made but were instead made by Medicare or Medicade.
Rovell reports that Ruiz projected nearly $1 billion in business in the first year. But instead, the company made just $3.9 million in revenue in the first nine months.
Now, Rovell reports, the company is claiming it will make a significant jump in revenue in year two rather than year one.
Oh, and LifeWallet founder Norberto Menendez is also suing Ruiz.
Ruiz’s original company — MSP Recovery — acquired LifeWallet and took its name and assets.
Menendez alleges in his suit that Ruiz failed to pay him for his LifeWallet assets despite rebranding all of Ruiz’s businesses “to leverage the LifeWallet name,” utilizing LifeWallet’s software and technology platform to do so.
Ruiz says that MSP Recovery developed all the proprietary assets that currently comprise LifeWallet and that the company only acquired the LifeWallet name from Menendez.
The lawsuit also claims Ruiz strongly advised him to take shares in the company in lieu of cash because the stock “was going to go to $30 or $40.”
Who knows, maybe Ruiz is right? But as of now it appears Miami has another Nevin Shapiro on its hands.