July 25, 2014 1:47 pm

Meet the 20-year-old who won the Eskimos’ 50/50 jackpot

Watch above: He’s just 20 years old, and now Connor Croken is nearly $350,000 richer! Carole Anne sits down with the Esks’ 50/50 draw winner.

EDMONTON – His name is Connor Croken, and as of Thursday night, the 20-year-old Edmontonian is $348,534 richer.

“It hasn’t sunk in yet,” Croken told Global News on Friday.

Edmonton Eskimos President Len Rhodes said Croken was waiting for him when he arrived at work at 8:30 a.m.  He was with his mother and brothers.

How did the young man, who works in the oil industry as a service technician, find out he had the lucky numbers?

He was still in bed and his friend Eric kept calling him.

“Finally I answered, and he’s like, ‘I’m 30 numbers of the winning 50/50 ticket. I’m pretty sure you won.’  And so I woke up, dazed, grabbed my tickets and went online, and sure enough, there was the ticket, and that was the number. I was just like ‘wow.’ I couldn’t say anything – I was speechless,” recalled Croken.

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“I woke everybody up yelling, ‘I won the 50/50.'”

The 20-year-old said he and his friends arrived at Commonwealth Stadium for the start of the game and Croken bought $100 worth of tickets; $40 for his parents and $60 for himself.

He said he’s not typically a lucky guy and hasn’t won anything before.

Rhodes said Croken didn’t reveal any immediate plans for his winnings, but added that his father is a financial planner.

“He was a really nice guy,” added Allan Watt, the Eskimos’ vice president of marketing. “[He] came in with his mom and couple of brothers. A really nice family, a young guy who clearly has his head together because he was talking about his family in the investment business.

“He’s a working guy, and he thought about maybe a house, or just being pretty careful with it.”

“He said ‘I’m still numb. I can’t believe this has happened to me.’ It was remarkable really,” recalled Watt.

When Croken spoke to Global News, he shared some practical plans for the money.

“I want to buy a house, I want to pay off a truck…. first thing’s first.”

The young winner went to Archbishop O’Leary High School and JJ Bowlen Junior High School. He also played for the North Edmonton Red Wings in the Capital Junior Hockey League.

Croken went to the Eskimos office Friday morning to validate his number, but will pick up his cheque on Tuesday at 10 a.m.

It’s a lot of change in a short amount of time for a 20-year-old to handle.

“It’s been hectic. My phone’s been going off, all my Twitter and Facebook have been going off the hook. I can’t keep up with it. It’s almost overwhelming.”

Croken will be on the Global Edmonton News Hour on Friday. 

© Shaw Media, 2014

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