Thanks to some nifty passing, Andrew Jimenez, president of the Student Government Association at Sandhills Community College, earned a $100,000 scholarship from the Dr. Pepper Tuition Giveaway at the SEC Championship Game in Atlanta’s Mercedes Benz Stadium.
The soda maker holds a competition of football accuracy during halftime of the major conference title games each year. The $100,000 winner is chosen based on who can more accurately chuck footballs through a hole in the side of an enormous can of Dr. Pepper.
“It was so awesome winning the Dr Pepper Tuition Giveaway this weekend,” said Jimenez in a statement shared by Dr. Pepper. “The $100K in tuition means so much to me and it will definitely help me focus on my studies and ultimately get closer to my long-term goal of working for the NBA. It was a great weekend, and I can’t wait for what’s ahead.”
The Dr. Pepper Tuition Giveaway has seen some controversy in recent years as winning players have opted for a more easily-controlled shovel- or two-handed-chest-pass rather than a traditional overhand football pass. Some observers have urged Dr. Pepper to ban the chest pass entirely.
Andrew, however, embraced tradition and went overhand the whole way, leading online men’s website BroBible to name him an “American Hero” for throwing rather than pushing the ball towards the target. Though his opponent opted for the chest pass, Jimenez saw overhand success, likely in no small part because Sandhills put together a dummy target can for him to practice on.
CBS Sports tweeted a video of the competition, declaring Jimenez to have “a Dr. Pepper Tuition Toss for the ages,” with a dominant 18-12 victory over Anita from the University of San Francisco.
Of the ten Tuition Toss finalists from the SEC, ACC, Big 12, Big Ten, and Pac-12 championship games, Jimenez was the only competitor from a community college.
Entrants were required to write an essay on why they deserve tuition, how it would impact their lives, and how it would help them achieve their personal and professional goals. Jimenez is working on his marketing degree and plans to transfer to study business and marketing.
He was selected for the SEC title game in Atlanta, where he earned a spot in the top two during a pregame competition. Taking the field at halftime, wearing a Dr. Pepper football jersey, Jimenez got to work.