For the third year in a row, Nissan is helping college football-obsessed viewers imagine what it would be like if Heisman Trophy Winners all lived in the same house for some reason.
Why would these former star college athletes live in the same house? Is it because traditionally, Heisman Trophy winners go on the middling (or worse) NFL careers that, in the best case scenario, are ignored when ESPN College Gameday offers them a job as a special correspondent? Or is it just because the “imagine the conflicts that would arise if X kind of people were forced to live together” formula still tantalizes us two decades after the Real World debuted. TV viewers love reality show parodies, after all.
Anyway, starring in the first spot for this year’s run are former Baylor Bear and current Redskins QB Robert Griffin III teaming up with former Oklahoma Sooner and current Rams QB Sam Bradford to portray themselves as two young cool kids who race around in expensive cars and blast hip-hop. Of course, the idea that Bradford is cool in any way, or imagining him routinely participateingin this sort of activity may be the funniest aspect of this commercial. Sorry, Sam, but you’re like the Billy Joel of the NFL—beloved, respected and skilled, but not exactly “cool.”
Starring as the aging veterans are Oklahoma State Cowboy, Barry Sanders, joined by former Michigan Wolverine and current ESPN NCAA football anchor Desmond Howard, who in tandem remind us how far away the late ’80s/early ’90s seem now. Those were the days, huh? Finally, playing the even older guys are the legendary former Texas Longhorn Earl Campbell and Pittsburgh Panther Tony Dorsett, both new to the campaign this year. The campaign, which will feature a traveling Heisman House that will visit college campuses throughout the country, will run through the rest of the NCAA season. Also, Ron Dayne will be in one of these episodes, which I must mention as a Wisconsin Badger fan.