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School Hosts NFL Finance Camp to Give Players a Rulebook for Long-term Stability

March 24, 2015
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Oakland Raiders linebacker Miles Burris and his wife, Jena (both pictured, center), developed a personalized finance model during the camp.

Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Josh Martin came to the University of Miami School of Business Administration looking for a game plan. But for this training camp, he was focused on numbers of a different kind.

The linebacker was one of 20 current and former NFL players who converged on the campus in March to take part in the inaugural NFL Finance Camp, where players learned to leverage their earnings on the field into long-term financial security. 

“Our income as professional football players is unique – you never know when it's going to end or how long it's going to go – so getting strong financial advice is important,” Martin said. “I want to get a better understanding of my finances and get some insight into how to plan for the future. And it’s in Miami!”

For four days, the players received instruction and tips from professors at the School of Business Administration, representatives from TD Ameritrade’s InvesTools education program, and retired defensive end Patrick Kerney, now the NFL vice president of player benefits. 

“We have a top-notch faculty at the cutting edge of what they’re going to be talking about, and they are very eager to help,” Anuj Mehrotra, vice dean for graduate business programs and executive education, told the players at the opening session.  “This is a great investment for you, your spouses, your significant others.”

It’s possible, the NFL’s Kerney told the crowd, to figure out how much life costs and how to foot that bill through mindful spending and investments. 

       

The Finance Camp included 20 current and former NFL players.

“The NFL offers the opportunity for many of its players to translate a relatively short career into a lifetime of freedom and opportunity,” Kerney said. “The NFL Finance Camp provides the information to help participants understand the long-term impact of current decisions, properly evaluate their current situation and capitalize on ways to optimize their financial futures.”

To kick things off, the players received individualized finance models that took into account their stage of life, their income and their answers to questions such as where they’d like to live after their playing days.

Oakland Raiders linebacker Miles Burris and his wife, Jena, found their model fascinating and a little overwhelming. “We’re going to talk about it tonight!” the linebacker said. “We’re here to have a better understanding of our money and to make it last. And my wife is here because she’ll retain this information a lot better than I will!” 

Laughing, Jena added: “It’s good for both of us to be on the same page, to be here and process all of this. I wish college had provided more life skills. It’s good to get this opportunity to be educated.” 

Aaron Murray, quarterback for the Kansas City Chiefs, says he’s always had an interest in finance and wants to avoid the pitfalls that have befallen some other players. “A lot of guys get these paychecks, and they buy things,” he said. “Twenty, thirty, forty years down the road, they don’t have anything left. I want to learn how to look at my future better.”

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