YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) — The NCAA allowing athletes to now profit off their name, image and likeness is already paying dividends on every level.

“I’m glad I was born when I was born,” YSU basketball sophomore John Lovelace said. “I didn’t know I’ll be here today in Youngstown playing basketball so, and it was a really big opportunity, and I want to take advantage of this.”

Soon, you’ll find familiar faces like Lovelace and YSU senior guard Brandon Rush in commercials or doing social media work and more with local companies.

“It’s a combination of our companies involvement in raising YSU athletics to what we see is a next level,” Managing Partner of Servpro Team Dobson Jimmy Dobson said.

In total, 17 Penguins ranging from football to men’s and women’s basketball inked their NIL deal the last few days.

“We’re young, we’re excited, we’re all about the community, we’re ready to do whatever it takes to win,” Will Rauber, CFO of HD Davis and a founder of the Penguin Collective said. “When Youngstown State athletics are good then, you know, typically there’s there’s a groundswell of support and excitement and it really just buoys the whole community.”

The community saw that this past year thanks to Youngstown State men’s basketball filling up Beeghly on their way to the program’s first Horizon League title and being the only NIL collective in their respected conferences, players are noticing the impact.

“Seeing people behind you seeing people going crazy for you like even like shooting and like soon a three-point shot before it even goes in and people are cheering that’s a good feeling to have so it’s really great,” Rush said. “I’ll be like, it’s kind of like, what a moment we have going into the next season and make sure we still make the city proud.”