Jared Casey of the University of Kansas football team went from scrub to paid spokesperson in one play, landing an Applebee’s ad for his recent heroics. (Watch it below.)
Casey proved that even the most obscure student athletes can profit now that the NCAA allows them to make money on endorsements and the like.
Before last week’s game at Texas, fullback Casey was a redshirt freshman walk-on who had not played an offensive snap for the truly awful Jayhawks. They were 1-8 and had lost 56 straight Big 12 conference games on the road.
Then Casey, filling in for injured tight end Mason Fairchild, caught a 2-point conversion pass in overtime to lift the 31-point underdog Jayhawks to a 57-56 victory over the Longhorns.
He became an instant hero. His parents freaked out, too:
Heroes get to do commercials, right? Applebee’s came calling, and Casey scored a deal for a regional spot. “Jared Casey, you just made one of the greatest game-winning catches in Kansas football history,” an announcer says in the ad, which was shot in Lawrence. “Where are you going now?”
“I’m going to Applebee’s,” Casey responds. But the best part comes when a server places two entrees in front of him.
“Hey, you always gotta go for two,” he says with a wink.
Casey received $800 in cash and $1,000 in Applebee’s gift cards for his 30-second commercial debut, The Kansas City Star reported.
He also has a promotion in the works with a car dealership, according to the newspaper.