Leo Burnett Creates Talking Bench for NCAA

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By Erik Oster Comment

Leo Burnett collaborated with production company Prettybird/director Billy Rainey on the NCAA’s new campaign promoting the importance of education to young athletes, called “2.3 or Take a Knee.”

The campaign introduces the new, stricter NCAA GPA requirements student athletes must meet in order to qualify for Division-I sports, “ensuring their brains are getting the workout they need” (or just driving up the cost of a term paper). To spread the word, and teach high school athletes about the importance of education, LB and Prettybird created a talking bench. 75 high school athletes were caught on eight hidden cameras receiving some tough love lectures from the talking bench, and some of their reactions are pretty funny. That their coaches don’t seem to have been in on the gag only adds to the humor. Whether the prank will translate to the teens taking away a lesson on the importance of academics, however, remains to be seen. See the talking bench in action for yourself in the 2:28 video above, and check out @talkingbench for the Twitter campaign.