This year, North Carolina Tar Heels great tennis player Fiona Crawley qualified for the U.S. Open.
Her run was short, but her NCAA eligibility was the buzz of the tournament.
Crawley lost to Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in straight sets in the tournament's first round on Tuesday.
The doubles competition saw her and Carson Tanguilig lose to Irina Khromacheva and Daria Seville.
Crawley might earn more money by playing in the competition, but she could lose her NCAA eligibility.
She could have won $81,000 by reaching the main draw. The NCAA has tennis-specific rules.
Tennis players can get prize money "from the event sponsor and not exceed $10,000 per year.
After $10,000, prize money cannot exceed actual and necessary expenses for each consecutive event in the calendar year."
"I would never take the money and never risk my eligibility, but I worked my head off this week and it seems unreal that football and basketball players make millions in NIL deals,
and I can't take the money I worked so hard for," Crawley told the Raleigh News & Observer.