Lions players Calvin Johnson and Theo Riddick will receive a total of $4.4 million each in their final season as a team, according to the Lions Foundation.
The Lions will pay $4,904,400 to the National Association of Collegiate Athletic Commissions to establish an educational and research center for student-athletes and the families of former players.
The fund, which also will be used to support the Lions Scholarship Program, will fund sports education and athletic development for students and families across the country.
The foundation announced the gift Monday.
The donations were made after the foundation’s trustees voted to approve the Lions’ $2.5 million donation to the NACAAC in May.
The NFL has a partnership with the foundation that includes $1 million a year for the organization to support scholarship and athletic initiatives.
The $1.5 billion contribution comes in the wake of the league’s annual spring meetings.
The NACAAAAC, which is the largest college sports association in the U.S., has made strides toward increasing athletic participation for its student-aged members and coaches, according a recent report by the Foundation for College Sports.
The report also said NACAAA has seen an increase in student-led athletic competitions, especially on the field.
The league has also invested in a scholarship fund for its students, with more than $2 billion in scholarship support since the foundation was founded.