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Carter Starocci Sued by Anheuser-Busch For Copyright Infringement Over “Natty Daddy” Nickname

Early Sunday evening, Penn State wrestler Carter Starocci received a letter that he was being sued by the popular beer company, Anheuser-Busch, for copyright infringement of Natural Light products.

The suit comes a week after Starocci won his fourth national championship and claimed the title “Mr. Natty Daddy” on Twitter. 

Natural Light has an item that also uses the Natty Daddy moniker, an 8.0% ABV beer that is a popular staple among college students. With the ability to profit off of name, image and likeness in today’s era of college athletics, Starocci’s nickname immediately arose as a potential copyright concern.

The week following NCAA Championships featured a heated Twitter feud between the two parties, culminating in a lawsuit filed by the multi-billion dollar beverage company. 

Penn State Athletics was notified of the impending lawsuit involving its star wrestler. Vice President for Intercollegiate Athletics Pat Kraft released a statement Monday morning assuring students, alumni and fans that Starocci will “always be [his] Natty Daddy.” Penn State President Neeli Bendapudi had no comment on the situation.

Starocci clapped back at Natural Light earlier in the week, taking a jab at his rival from Iowa in the process. While Starocci has remained relatively quiet since the suit was filed, inside sources believe he has contacted a lawyer and will make a public statement soon.

Many students at Penn State have since advocated for a Starocci-Natural Light sponsorship deal, believing the pair are an integral part of the Penn State experience. While numerous fraternities have come out in support of this, the Interfraternity Council and parties involved in the lawsuit are not entertaining the suggestions.

The copyright allegations are not said to impact Starocci’s decision on whether or not he will return to Happy Valley for his sixth year of eligibility.

We’ll update this post with more information as it becomes available.

Editor’s note: This story is part of Onward State’s April Fools’ Day series. It is satirical, meant for entertainment, and not to be taken literally. Any quotes were made up for the purpose of this post.

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About the Author

Jamie Lynch

Jamie is a first-year DUS student from Chappaqua, NY. He loves to swim and is a member of the club team here at Penn State. Jamie is also in the Schreyer Honors College, and wishes there was an advanced course in college football fandom (scored 118/133 on the mascot quiz). Avid ping-pong player, dairy lover, and has met two U.S. Presidents, in case anyone was wondering. If you have anything to share, or want to debate the AP Poll with someone, email [email protected] or reach out on instagram @jamie.ly3.

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