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Sep 15, 2014 11:45 AM EDT

Columbia College President to Play One Student in a Game of Madden, On the Line are Free Textbooks


In about a month, students at Columbia College (CC) in Missouri will have the chance to pass their textbook bill on to the school's president if they can pass one test: beat him in a game of "Madden 15."

Just recently released, "Madden NFL 15" is EA Sports' wildly popular pro football simulator. On Oct. 17, students will play in a tournament for the chance to take on Dr. Scott Dalrymple for free textbooks.

According to CC's full rundown of the rules and regulations, the PlayStation 4 will be used for the tournament and games will be played with two-minute quarters and a 20-second play clock. The tournament will go from 11:45 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., according to the school's website, and Dalrymple will play the tournament's winner at 5 p.m.

Dalrymple is serving in his first year as CC's president and is already making a positive impression on the student body and beyond. The Missourian reported most of the feedback CC has received for their president's challenge has been positive, from its own students or not.

"I must warn you: I've been practicing," Dalrymple said in his "epic trash talk video" announcing the challenge. You can play as any team you like: the St. Louis Rams, the Dallas Cowboys, the Chicago Bears - you can even choose a professional team."

The U.S. Public Interest Research Group estimated the average student spends up to $1,200 on textbooks per academic year, U.S. News reported earlier this year. Save for any reselling, students can spend nearly $5,000 on textbooks for their four years in school.

Aside from sparing the expense for at least one student, Dalrymple apparently wants to connect with the student body on a more social level. In addition to hosting the Madden tournament, the Columbia Daily Tribune reported he is in the midst of visiting all of CC's 34 campuses.

"We want to make the employees, alumni and students at these campuses feel special," he told the newspaper. "They're part of the college, too, and we want them to feel that way. The least we can do is go out and introduce ourselves.

"It's amazing - the things we do and the challenges folks in remote locations face, the ways we can have different partnerships in communities and how we learn to market ourselves better. These are all things we have a hard time understanding from Columbia."

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