Gators vie for Alltel VIP day

Published: Friday, September 1, 2006 at 9:22 a.m.
Last Modified: Friday, September 1, 2006 at 9:22 a.m.

Ten University of Florida students were selected today as finalists for Alltel's "My Own Game Program," where they will have a chance to compete to have the ultimate VIP day at a home football game on Sept. 23.

“(Alltel) is centered around the customer and unique experiences,” Lucie Pathmann, director of marketing publicity at Alltel, said. “So what's more unique than having a game day named after you?”

But to win, the contestants will have to win over scores of people and get them to vote online.

Kicking off the contest, the 10 finalists will take part in a pep rally Saturday from 2:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. in front of Emerson Alumni Hall. The pep rally will include speeches from all candidates addressing why they should be selected to have a home football game named after them.

People will have the chance to vote for the finalists from 5 p.m. Saturday through Sept. 13. People can vote up to 2,000 times each during this period three ways:

  • Go online to

  • Send a text message with their candidates designated keyword to short code 123456; or

  • Visit an Alltel tent on campus Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday.

    “The number of votes is all dependent on how good the finalists are. We are giving them tools to get their names out. It's just up to them what they do with it,” Pathmann said.

    The finalists have some incentives to campaign hard. The winner gets to see their name up on the scoreboard during the Kentucky game. They also receive a customized jersey, a Samsung 42-inch television, a Samsung MP3 player and ten guest tickets. The finalist with the most votes after the first 24 hours receives a $1,000 bonus, after taxes.

    The top 10 finalists were chosen based on a written description of why a home football game should be named after them and a short essay describing what they would be willing to do to win the contest.

    “The statements were judged based on creativity, uniqueness and grammar,” said Jeremy Ley of Alltel.

    All top 10 finalists received a mountain bike and a Samsung Nimbus Phone with service just for being selected.

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