The Fresno State women’s basketball team was led by identical twins Haley and Hanna Cavinder, who put up impressive numbers. According to The New York Post, Haley was the team’s leader in rebounds, assists, and points, averaging 19.8 per game, while Hanna was second in all categories, averaging 14.5 per game.
The 21-year-old twins, who have over 800,000 Instagram followers combined and 4 million TikTok followers, were the first to sign endorsement deals after the NCAA changed its policy. The goal of NIL, according to the Miami Herald, was for athletes to use their entrepreneurial skills to land sponsorship deals with brands and local businesses that matched their personalities.
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“When NIL passed, many people were surprised to see Hanna and I, as well as other female athletes, leading the charge. “I believe it demonstrates that female athletes have equal power to male athletes, and NIL has been the driving force,” Haley told the New York Post. Boost Mobile, WWE, Champs, and Six Star Pro Nutrition have all paid the twins over $1 million, according to Darren Heitner, an attorney who works with them.
“We didn’t go into it with any expectations,” Hanna told the Miami Herald, “but we’ve learned so much over the year.” We learned how to form business relationships and connect with brands that are similar to our own. As a 21-year-old, you don’t usually find yourself in rooms with business people. We also learned about time management and taxes, which are both important aspects of everyday life.”
The sisters also own stock in Baseline, a clothing company founded by Fresno State graduates. The Arizona twins began posting videos online demonstrating their basketball skills during the pandemic’s lockdowns. “It’s incredible if you’re twins and can dribble in time. It occurred at a critical juncture in people’s lives when they were looking for ways to connect. “Seeing NIL a few months later was definitely crazy,” Hanna said.
Because of their social media fame and financial success, the Cavinder duo discussed having to deal with trash-talkers. “Many people enjoy informing us about it. On the court, however, we’ll see them. People forget that before COVID, before we went viral on TikTok, we were just basketball players trying to put together a college scholarship and achieve our dreams. “It’s always been about basketball,” Haley added.
Tom, the twins’ father, was a basketball player at Nova Southeastern University in Florida, according to the twins. “We are a very competitive family,” Haley explained. While both sisters are currently pursuing business degrees, Hanna mentions her dream collaborations, which include luxury fashion house Prada and chocolate bar Twix. They have never had a business disagreement, according to the Cavinders. “Because we’re a package deal,” Haley says, “it’s super simple.”
The sisters went on to say that while they are similar in appearance, they have distinct personalities. “Haley is more of a people pleaser, whereas I am straightforward and honest. That can obviously be both a good and a bad thing,” Hanna explained. “I’m more like, ‘Let’s read the room and not say everything that’s on our minds,’ while Hanna is more like, ‘Let’s say how it is,’” Haley explained.