Sign of the times: KU student goes viral at College GameDay

Posted on Feb 19, 2018 in News and Sports

Whenever ESPN’s College GameDay comes to Lawrence, students know to bring their A-game when it comes to signs. In between the signs cheering the Jayhawks and jeering the West Virginia Mountaineers, one student took a jab at the channel broadcasting the whole event.

Oklahoma’s Trae Young, considered by many to be a frontrunner for National Player of the Year, has received consistent coverage from the media all season, drawing the ire of some fans.

Jacob Camenzind, a sophomore from Wichita studying mechanical engineering, decided to poke some fun at the whole situation with a sign that read “ESPN mandated this sign be about Trae Young.”

“I knew College GameDay would probably talk about Trae Young since the show is essentially pregame coverage for all the games that day. I was also well aware of how tired some people are about ESPN’s constant coverage of Young, so I figured that’d be a good subject for the sign.”

A good subject it was, as Jacob began getting compliments and picture requests as soon as he walked into Allen Fieldhouse that morning. As the countdown to going live continued, the sign gained some new fans.

ESPN's Rece Davis with KU sophomore Jacob Camenzind and his College GameDay sign“When Rece Davis walked onto the court, he saw my sign, looked at me, and started laughing. As the rest of the analysts came in, Rece Davis pointed it out to Bilas, Williams, and Greenberg and they all gave a chuckle as well. During the show, one of the cameramen trained his camera on me, and he gave a thumbs up as I held up my sign. When I got on the video board, I knew we were on TV, and my whole section went crazy. Rece Davis stuck around after the show and took pictures with fans, and he told me my sign was hilarious.”

Jacob’s brush with fame wasn’t done. His tweet about the sign began to blow up, with more than 100 retweets on his own account, multiple KU fan accounts joining in the fun, and even a shoutout from Sports Illustrated.

Despite the sign, Jacob wanted to make his actual opinion on Trae Young clear.

“I love him as a player, don’t let the sign fool you. And to be completely honest, I have no problem with ESPN’s coverage of Trae Young. He is putting on a historic season, and he deserves every minute of attention he gets. I’m pretty tired of all the hate directed to him, but I still couldn’t resist making the sign because I knew people would find it funny.”

—Ryan Camenzind, j’17, Jacob’s brother, stood next to Jacob at College GameDay and watched as Jacob’s phone died in 20 minutes due to the constant buzz of notifications.

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