Duke basketball still mulling decision on $1 million NIL tournament

The Blue Devils still might end up in Las Vegas for the $1 million NIL event
Mar 2, 2024; Durham, North Carolina, USA;  Duke basketball head coach Jon Scheyer (Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports)
Mar 2, 2024; Durham, North Carolina, USA; Duke basketball head coach Jon Scheyer (Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports) / Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

One of the most fascinating events of the college basketball season will be the inaugural NIL Tournament in Las Vegas. The Duke basketball team will not be participating in this year's version of the tournament, but are still mulling its future status.

Reports surfaced on Wednesday morning of the matchups between the first round of the tournament, which features Rutgers, Notre Dame, Texas A&M, San Diego State, Alabama, Houston, Creighton, and Oregon.

The event will be played in Las Vegas around Thanksgiving, a similar timeframe to when the Blue Devisl are out west for a non-conference meeting with Kansas in Sin City.

However, the NIL Tournament, which guarantees $1 million to participating teams, will be expanding next season to an 18-team field. Gonzaga, Michigan, St. John's, Syracuse and Saint Joseph's are confirmed for next season, according to reports, while the tournament organizers look to find others to complete the field.

Programs and players in the event have the ability to earn more money based on appearances throughout the week in Las Vegas as well as team and individual success in the games.

CBS Sports' Matt Norlander said Duke is rumored to be joining the event in 2025, but the program has not made an official decision. Kansas and Virginia are two other teams who are also involved in talks to join the event.

The Blue Devils have already loaded its non-conference schedule for this season, which includes games against Arizona, Kentucky, Illinois, and an unnamed SEC program, in addition to its matchup against the Jayhawks.

Duke has not been linked to any other multi-team event in 2025.

Schools who are participating in the NIL Tournament this season are assumed to have signed 3-year contracts with the event, but details of the games -- other than the first round matchups -- have not been made public.