Popeyes sign awkward ‘meme kid’ to NIL deal 10 years after viral video

popeyes meme kid dieunerst collin in viral Vine video and winning state championshipVine/Twitter: Dieunerst Collin

Fried chicken chain Popeyes has signed the viral ‘Popeyes meme kid’ to a Name, Image, and Likeness (NIL) deal, 10 years after the awkward original video of him went viral on Vine.

The Popeyes meme kid — real name Dieunerst Collin — went viral on Vine in 2013, but it wasn’t due to his own doing.

Instead, many of you will remember the awkward kid that was approached in a Popeyes by a random stranger comparing him to fellow viral sensation Terio, asking Collin to do the trademark “ooh” sound.

Of course, Collin at the time had no clue what the man meant, instead just looking at him awkwardly while trying to go about his day — but the internet absolutely loved it, and has done ever since.

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Now a freshman offensive lineman at D-II Lake Erie College, Collin has secured himself an NIL deal with Popeyes, proving that the internet really does come full circle.

The move came after fans demanded an NIL deal for Collin, saying that he deserved it after becoming a State Champion in late 2021.

On January 8, Collin posted to his social media channels saying that he “just wanted to talk” with Popeyes — and within days, a deal was done.

“I didn’t know the internet was like that,” Collin said on Instagram Live shortly after the fact. “Now I know to never doubt the internet. I appreciate that.”

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It’s wild to see this story come full circle, and for Dieunerst Collin to wait so long for that viral video to become worth it, you can tell how happy he is to have secured the deal.

The terms of the deal aren’t clear, but it’s only very recently that college players could agree to NIL deals, with NCAA lifting the rules surrounding them in July 2021.