PSU news by
Penn State's student blog



When A Coke Show Visits A Pepsi Campus…

Penn State is notorious as a Pepsi-sponsored school, which is immediately apparent if you’re a Coke fan on campus. You can’t find a Coke anywhere. Well…almost.

Former Penn State President Joab Thomas signed a deal with Pepsi back in the ’90s to make it the official soft drink brand of the Nittany Lions. (Here I am avoiding the soda/pop argument .) The deal, which has been continually renewed since then, gives Pepsi the exclusive rights to campus vending machines, dining halls, convenience stores, and pretty much anywhere else you can get a nice cold one this side of College Ave.

But College GameDay, which is in Happy Valley this weekend for the first time since 2009, is heavily sponsored by Home Depot and — you guessed it — Coca Cola. I never thought I’d see the day where I could get a free can of Coke passed out to me on Old Main Lawn, right next to a Coke-sponsored countdown clock.

So what gives?

“The Penn State-Pepsi relationship is strong and contemplates conflicts in sponsorship that arise from time to time,” a spokesperson for Penn State Athletics said. “It happens when Penn State hosts NCAA Championships, as Coke is an NCAA corporate partner. ESPN has an advertising relationship with Coke.”

Luckily, Pepsi is the realest and supported Penn State in its quest to bring ESPN’s College GameDay to campus, despite the sponsorship conflict.

“The possibility of ESPN College Game Day visiting our campus was discussed internally during the summer,” a spokesperson for Penn State Athletics said. “At that time, we made Pepsi aware of the possibility and the relationship of College Game Day with Coke. Pepsi recognized the special opportunity for ESPN College Game Day to showcase Penn State, our students and campus and was supportive from the beginning.”

So here’s to you, Pepsi. Let’s all toast with a rum & Coke this weekend.

About the Author

Elissa Hill

Elissa is a junior public relations major and the managing editor of Onward State. She is from Punxsutawney, PA [insert corny Bill Murray joke here] and considers herself an expert on all things ice cream. Send questions and comments via e-mail ([email protected]) and follow her on Twitter (@ElissaKHill) for more corny jokes.


More by Elissa

‘Paterno’ Nominated For Two Emmy Awards

Tune in for the 70th Primetime Emmy Awards September 17 to see how “Paterno” fares against the competition.

Skeller Replacement Best We Could’ve Hoped For

Recent Graduates Highlight Alumni Council Appointees


Reports: Tony Carr To Begin Professional Career In Italy

Tony Carr might have to wait a little longer than he had hoped to make his NBA debut.

Penn State Hockey’s Aarne Talvitie Showcases At Devils Development Camp

Penn State Hoops Releases 2018-19 Non-Conference Schedule

Forward Abdou Tsimbila Commits To Penn State Hoops

Penn State Volleyball Trio Representing U.S. At Pan-American Cup

Student Life

Penn State Student Dies Of Allergic Reaction To Peanuts

Max McGlinchey had just finished his freshman year studying finance.

Freshman 101: On-Campus Life

Student Farm To Commemorate Summer Solstice With Second Annual Celebration

Plans Submitted For New KFC In State College

Developers have submitted preliminary land development plans to build a new KFC restaurant at 1780 S. Atherton St. in State College.

Skeller Replacement Best We Could’ve Hoped For

The last thing we need is an Applebee’s, so maybe this is the best we could’ve hoped for, after all.

Playa Bowls To Open State College Location

Famous on the Jersey Shore for its brightly colored bowls and smoothies, Playa Bowls’ menu includes everything from açai and pitaya bowls to fresh juices.

Be the first to know

  • Top posts and the best Penn State stories

Thank you for subscribing.

Something went wrong.

Doggie’s Rathskeller And Garden Opens With Hopes Of Returning To Its Roots

The All-American Rathskeller is no more and Doggie’s Rathskeller and Garden is officially in business — opening with its “sneak peak” at the new bar Thursday afternoon in time for Arts Fest.

Send this to a friend