KU’s Jared Casey cashing in on national attention from game-winning catch

Published: Nov. 16, 2021 at 4:53 PM CST
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LAWRENCE, Kan. (KWCH) - Plainville native Jared Casey shook the sports world Saturday night when he caught a game-winning pass leading the Jayhawks to a historic win over Texas. Now, you’ll be seeing more of him on your TV screen and it won’t just be on the football field.

The Kansas City Star’s Jesse Newell reports Casey signed a NIL or name, image and likeness deal with Applebee’s.

He was shooting television ads on Tuesday for the restaurant that will soon run in Kansas.

Casey is an unlikely hero being a walk-on at KU, but he made the most of his playing Saturday at Texas, capped with catching a pass for the game-winning two-point conversion in overtime. The Jayhawks’ 57-56 win over Texas, a team expected to challenge for Big 12 supremacy in the preseason, sent shockwaves across the college football landscape.

Casey’s performance is also bringing attention to his hometown of Plainville in Rooks County, Kansas. Jared’s brother, Andrew Casey, said the family was just proud to see Jared get into the game at Texas. In overtime, when KU went for two, Jared’s family believed he’d come through if given the chance.

“I knew Jared would catch that ball, no matter what, and so I screamed so loud, my voice is still a little hoarse,” his sister, Amanda Wilson said.

Jared’s father, Jerry Casey said at first, they didn’t know it was Jared who caught the game-winning pass.

“I was right in line with the ball, the ball actually kind of blocked the numbers of the player out,” Jerry said.

Once they learned it was Jared on the ground in the endzone with the ball tucked into his body, they celebrated. The spotlight continues to shine. In addition to the Applebee’s commercial, ESPN’s College Gameday interviewed Jared’s parents, Jerry and Karen Casey. That interview will air Saturday, Nov. 20.

For the Jayhawks, the hope is that Jared’s game-winning catch can spark a turnaround for the program.

“The important thing is, we hope it builds that platform for KU football to make another step up that ladder to be back into national prominence,” Jerry Casey said.

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