NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 09:  Jayden Daniels quarterback LSU, Marvin Harrison Jr. wide receiver from Ohio State,  Bo Nix quarterback, Oregon, Michael Penix Jr, quarterback, Washington pose with the Trophy during the Heisman Trophy press conference at the New York Marriott Marquis on December 9, 2023 in New York City, New York.  (Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 09: Jayden Daniels quarterback LSU, Marvin Harrison Jr. wide receiver from Ohio State, Bo Nix quarterback, Oregon, Michael Penix Jr, quarterback, Washington pose with the Trophy during the Heisman Trophy press conference at the New York Marriott Marquis on December 9, 2023 in New York City, New York. (Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Are NFL Draft Prospects Raising Cane’s Newest Employees?

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College football fans everywhere are now aware that LSU quarterback (QB) Jayden Daniels is the 2023 Heisman Trophy recipient as we move toward the NFL Draft.

However, many fans might not know that he had to work for this honor.

Daniels, along with fellow Heisman finalists, Washington QB Michael Penix Jr. and Oregon QB Bo Nix completed a shift at a famous fast food chain the day before the Heisman ceremony.

Order up

On Friday, December 8, all three athletes visited Raising Cane’s flagship store in New York City to serve some customers. It is unclear why Ohio State receiver Marvin Harrison Jr. was not at the event.

Their day started with a pep talk from CEO Of Raising Cane’s, Todd Graves. Afterward, each of the athletes got to work in the kitchen.

The signal-callers all looked to be having a lot of fun while completing several tasks for the restaurant. The athletes took turns making chicken fingers and Texas Toast, announcing orders, taking selfies with customers, and talking to the media. 

The three men were fed after their shift and each gave their thoughts on the meal.

Good, delicious, and like no other,” Penix shared while enjoying some french fries.

“The whole thing is just easy,” Daniels said. “That’s all I gotta say.”

Nix even shared a tip for how to eat some of the food.

“You gotta take the toast, and make, like a sandwich with the Cane’s sauce,” he said. “That’s where you’re at your peak.”

Raising Cane’s has proved to be a prominent business in the world of Name, Image, and Likeness (NIL). Aside from the three Heisman finalists, the company has worked with Florida Gators QB Graham Mertz, South Carolina QB Spencer Rattler, and UCLA defensive back Devin Kirkwood. They also had NIL deals with college-turned-NFL stars such as running backs Isaiah Spiller (Chargers) and Bijan Robinson (Falcons). 

Superstar status

Fans loved seeing their favorite athletes working. One commented, saying, “Competition aside, it’s cool to see these guys hanging out and doing stuff like this before the award show… I know it’s not necessarily volunteer work but [it’s] still cool to see.” Others rooted for who they believed should win the Heisman. 

A photo even surfaced showing just how many fans showed up to the event. 

Proud to have @JayD__5 @bonix10 and Michael Penix Jr. trade spirals for Chicken Fingers in epic takeover of @RaisingCanes Times Square Flagship Restaurant,” Graves posted to X.

Graves even showed his support for Daniels after he won the Heisman.

Receiving recognition for their work

Aside from the Heisman, Daniels also won Walter Camp Player of the Year, the Davey O’Brien Award, Johnny Unitas Golden Arm, and Associated Press Player of the Year. Fans were relatively certain that Daniels would win the Heisman award after he won AP Player of the Year since this award has only had a different winner than the Heisman two times in the last 20 years

Penix Jr. took home the Maxwell Award, which is given to the best all-around college football player. Nix received the William V. Campbell Trophy, which recognizes the league’s best scholar-athlete.

It is evident that Raising Cane’s knows how to choose the best athletes.

Victoria Jonach is an aspiring writer and media analyst fascinated by what kinds of activities players participate in off the football field. Growing up in New Jersey, she is a New York Giants fan and attends Rutgers University, pursuing a career in Journalism and Media Studies. She writes for FirstRoundMock.com covering anticipated NFL Draft picks and their acts of volunteerism, entrepreneurship, and other interests that shape these individuals.

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