Dr. Pepper brings college football championship trophy to Rutgers
College football’s biggest prize came to Rutgers, but it was not because of anything Scarlet Knights’ head coach Chris Ash did.
The third edition of the National Championship Trophy presented by Dr. Pepper spent a few hours at The Yard on the College Avenue campus Tuesday afternoon as part of its nationwide tour around the country.
It stopped at Rutgers because of its recent transition from Pepsi to Coca-Cola, which bottles about 30 percent of all Dr. Pepper products, said trophy manager Charley Green.
“Dr. Pepper is available here for the first time in many years, so as part of that celebration of Dr. Pepper coming back to Rutgers, they wanted to have the trophy out and have games for the students,” Green said.
Along with the trophy, free samples of Dr. Pepper Cherry were handed out to students who passed by. Opportunities to win Dr. Pepper t-shirts were given through winning games of Dr. Pepper pong or throwing a football at a target at least once in five tries.
The tour began in Texas on opening weekend, stopping at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas, for then-No. 15 Houston’s 33-23 win over then-No. 3 Oklahoma at noon, then went to Arlington for No. 1 Alabama’s 52-6 thrashing of then-No. 20 USC at 8 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 3.
The trophy was then taken to Austin for Texas’ 50-47 double-overtime upset win over then-No. 10 Notre Dame Sunday, Sept. 4.
It attended the Battle at Bristol between No. 15 Tennessee and Virginia Tech last weekend and will visit games every weekend in addition to the weekly stops at other Universities during the week, Green said.
“The season is 14 weeks long so there are a minimum of 14 games and 14 other appearances such as this one,” he said. “It’s a whirlwind.”
But as constant the travel is, the reception from the students, including those at Rutgers, has been positive, he said.
“It’s been great,” Green said. “There’s been good recognition from the students. Most of them don’t need a lot of explanation as to what it is so it shows there’s a lot of football fans here, so that’s always nice to see.”
Brian Fonseca is a School of Communication and Information junior majoring in journalism and media studies. He is the Sports Editor of The Daily Targum. Follow him on Twitter @briannnnf for more.