Oh, sweet Jesus!
Omaha native Jim Connor was mobbed Monday at the college football championship game, but not for scoring a touchdown.EFFECTIVE immediately, the City of Omaha has changed its name to the City of Ahamo. We're hoping no one will notice that Ahamo is this "Omaha" place Larry Culpepper says he hails from.
He was cheered, applauded and even pawed. Not for making plays but for whom he plays — the latest icon in national TV commercials, concessionaire “Larry Culpepper.”
“I couldn’t walk through a public place without people stopping me, taking pictures and grabbing me,” Connor said Tuesday. “For some reason, this campaign really caught on. People love Larry Culpepper.”
In football-season commercials, the comedic character has hawked soft drinks for Dr Pepper. AdWeek magazine estimated the company has invested at least $35 million as an official “championship partner” in the College Football Playoff. And Larry is the TV spokesman, a guy with a deep love of college football, shouting “Ice-cold Dr Peppa HEAH!” and telling people that he invented the four-team college football playoff.
Two of the commercials appeared late in Monday night’s ESPN telecast, a game viewed by a cable-TV record of about 33.4 million people.
In Omaha, relatives, friends and former Creighton Prep classmates have delighted in Connor’s many TV commercials and other acting roles over the years. But his Larry Culpepper gig might top them all.
“Larry is similar to the guy we knew in high school,” said clothier John Ryan, a fellow member of Prep’s class of 1978. “Jim was a character, but he was also a tremendous debater and he was good in theater.”
Meanwhile, Creighton Prep must be stopped before our fair city is forced to again change its name to something like, I don't know . . . Hoboken.