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Popeyes “meme kid” Dieunerst Collin to star in Super Bowl commercial

From memes to reality, the once viral sensation will appear in a Super Bowl ad this Sunday.

Companies In Chicago Photo by Jakub Porzycki/NurPhoto via Getty Images

From memes to dreams to now the Super Bowl.

It’s been a heck of a month for Lake Eerie College offensive lineman Dieunerst Collin and on Monday, it was revealed that the once viral sensation will star in Popeyes’ Super Bowl commercial this Sunday.

Even if the name Dieunerst Collin doesn’t ring a bell to you, you’ve most likely seen him in some form over the last decade. During the height of Vine, he became known as the “Popeyes kid” or “Side Eye kid” for his awkward side eye when someone filmed him inside of a Popeyes restaurant. At the time, one of the biggest Vine sensations was Lil’ Terio and his “Ooh, kill ‘em” videos and a poster spotted the somewhat similar looking Dieunerst in a Popeyes and filmed him.

In hindsight, yeah, this was a definite invasion of privacy to just run up on this unsuspecting kid at Popeyes and start filming. But it ended up working out.

In 2021, Collin re-emerged into the spotlight when he helped East Orange High School win a football state championship in New Jersey. And following his freshman season at Division II Lake Erie College in 2022, everything came full circle with him signing an NIL deal with Popeyes in January.

Audiences across the globe will be seeing his face during Super Bowl Sunday and the kicker is, we may have to get use to it. Beyond his spokesperson status with Popeyes, his bio on Lake Erie’s website indicates that he is studying to become a sports analyst. Imagine if we do see this young man ESPN or Fox Sports one day, and it will have all started with a meme.