As you know, the people who took the 2021 NFL Agent Exam in August got their results this week. It was an emotional time, for a lot of reasons, as some people got the news that they’d been waiting years to hear, while others found out they’d have to wait another year (or in some cases, five) to realize their dreams.

I wanted to get a feel for how test-takers felt about not just the test, but the industry, so I asked hundreds of them to take part in a brief survey this week. No surprise that most of those who responded (about 70 percent) passed the exam. Here are the questions and answers that I found interesting.

Whether or not you passed or failed, did the results surprise you?: After spending the week hearing from would-be agents shocked that they failed, I was surprised that the majority (55%) answered, ‘no.’ A little more than a fifth (22 %) said, ‘yes.’ I think this had to do with so many people who did well taking the survey.

What was your take on the exam?: Again, the survey answers didn’t match up with  my one-on-one conversations this week. There really wasn’t much separating the top three responses: pretty straightforward/not especially difficult (38.6%); tough but fair (31.6%); and tough and confusing (28.1). I heard quite often this week that some of the topics on the exam weren’t in the pre-exam seminar, but the response, ‘the subjects tested weren’t what I expected’ got only 1.8% of the responses.  

the next two questions dealt with our exam prep materials, and I was happy with the feedback. On the question, how helpful were ITL’s study materials, about half (46.6%) called them a “true difference-maker” and the other half (48.3%) said they were “more helpful than not.” Only about five percent total said they either “neither helped or hurt” or “minimal or no help.” On the question, which one of our study materials was most helpful, most (51.7%) said our study guide, edging out our practice exams (46.6%). 

Where the responses were more in line with what I expected was in the two NIL questions.

Whether or not you passed, how do you feel about the name, image and likeness era?:  The majority (50.9%) said “it’s definitely going to be impactful in the area of football representation,” while “it will be impactful to some players and schools, but not across the board” garnered 43.9%. Next, we asked the question, how prepared are you to operate in the NIL field? About a third (36.2%) said “I feel very confident I can make money with NIL outside of traditional player representation,” while almost half (46.5%) said, “not sure, but I see NIL as a real opportunity and a potential advantage, and I would like to learn more.” I agree.

We’ll talk more about the exam and the reaction to it in the Friday Wrap. Make sure to register for it here.