Penn State was recently featured on a viral video of former Giants quarterback Eli Manning attempting to walk onto the school’s football team.
The prank was for Manning's upcoming ESPN+ show, “Eli’s Places,” and a clip of it has reached almost 5 million views on YouTube. In it, Manning disguises himself as “Chad Powers” and tries out for a walk-on quarterback position for the fall 2022 season.
Yet in order to try out for the Penn State football team, “Chad Powers” had to enroll as a student at the university. Additionally as a first-year student, Chad was required to live on campus with a roommate.
I was that roommate. This is my story.
When I first received my room assignment for the semester, I immediately reached out to my new roommate and introduced myself. Chad didn’t text me back for several days until I received a message from him stating, “Who is Chad, and how did you get my number??!!!”
I didn’t know what to do. So I just figured I could wait until we moved in to make formal introductions in person.
But something was off with Chad. He looked like he was in his mid-40s and honestly a little like Eli Manning.
I tried to get to know him by inviting to go grab dinner at Redifer, but he just replied cryptically, “Dude, I’m Eli Manning. I’m here to film a bit for my TV show. There’s no way I’m eating dining hall food.”
I didn’t know how to react. It’s kind of awkward to sleep 3 feet away from a guy you hardly know.
But hey — that’s the dorm life.
Chad wasn’t a bad roommate, but he wasn’t exactly a great one either. We eventually had to separate the room into two with a line of tape when our differences became irreconcilable.
When we sat down with the resident assistant to see if we could resolve our issues, Chad just kept on insisting that his real name was Eli Manning and that he wasn’t my actual roommate.
When the video came out, I felt betrayed.
Why hadn’t Chad told me who he really was? Why couldn’t he be honest with me, his best friend and roommate?
I am shocked and hurt. I thought my room was supposed to be Chad and Braden’s Place, but I guess it’s just Eli’s.