He’s a Pepper

UNLV dental student Casey Vidovich just got the sweetest deal of his life: a $123,000 scholarship, courtesy of sugary soda.

The first-year student from Placentia, Calif., learned about the competition from his mom, who sent him an e-mail urging him to submit a one-minute video explaining why he should win the scholarship. In his video, he showed a picture of the human brain, highlighting its distinct parts—the temporal lobe, parietal lobe, frontal lobe and the Dr Pepper lobe, which is stimulated by consuming said beverage.

It was a creative video, but Vidovich didn’t think he would ever hear from back from contest organizers. “I didn’t really believe in those contests,” he says.

Until a week later, that is, when he got the phone call. “And then, all of a sudden, I got picked and was like, ‘No way! This is real!’”

Vidovich flew to the Atlantic Coast Conference Championship football game Dec. 4 in Charlotte, N.C., where he competed at halftime for the scholarship.

In front of nearly 70,000 fans, Vidovich and another contender threw 10 footballs at a giant Dr Pepper can. “I was pretty dang nervous,” he says. But that didn’t shake his aim. Vidovich sunk the most footballs—two competitors actually tied, and he won the tiebreaker with nine out of 10—and earned the $123,000 scholarship.

“It’s taken a lot of stress out of my life, because I’ve been scrambling trying to figure out student loans,” he says. It’s also inspired this dental student to drink more Dr Pepper, and, of course, brush his teeth after doing so.

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