WWE has officially confirmed the signing of Olympic gold medalist Gable Steveson.
WWE announced the signing of Steveson on Thursday, noting that he'll be part of the company's roster while continuing to wrestle at the University of Minnesota for his senior year. Dave Meltzer first reported last weekend that Steveson had signed with WWE.
Steveson won gold in freestyle wrestling at the Tokyo Olympics in August. Steveson competed in the 125-kilogram class.
"WWE signs Olympic gold medalist and reigning NCAA wrestling champion Gable Steveson to an exclusive agreement," WWE announced. "In the company’s first-ever NIL deal, Steveson will join the WWE roster while defending his NCAA title for the University of Minnesota."
NIL deals allow athletes to make money off of their name, image, and likeness while still in college. ESPN wrote that Steveson's multi-year talent contract with WWE will then begin after he graduates.
"After Steveson graduates in May, his multiyear talent contract with WWE will begin; he'll be a full-time performer with the company (but also appear on WWE programming during the school year)," ESPN wrote.
ESPN noted that WWE "will set up a remote training facility for Steveson near campus where he'll learn the finer points of in-ring work with WWE coaches." He'll also have access to the WWE Performance Center in Orlando.
"We all saw his physical ability prior to and at the Olympics," WWE president and chief revenue officer Nick Khan told ESPN. "What we also saw was that Gable has as much charisma as he does ability. Marketability and ability are both of great importance to us.
"This is just the starting line and nowhere close to the finish line. So our investment is based on how much we think of Gable now and how much bigger we think he can become."
Steveson and fellow gold medalist wrestler Tamyra Mensah-Stock were honored at WWE SummerSlam last month.
Steveson's brother Bobby Steveson, who also wrestled at the University of Minnesota, was part of the most recent group of recruits to join the WWE Performance Center.