Dining With Denise Neil

Wichita food truck must cease and desist serving its ‘Evan Almighty Wessel’ burger

Evan Wessel might play like a spicy fried pickle, but that doesn’t mean you can name your spicy-fried-pickle burger after him.
Evan Wessel might play like a spicy fried pickle, but that doesn’t mean you can name your spicy-fried-pickle burger after him. The Wichita Eagle

The NCAA and its rules. They just keep interfering with Wichita’s fun.

First it was last week’s Shocker watch party at Intrust Bank Arena, canceled because it would have violated NCAA rules if the arena had profited from food or beverage sales during the event.

Now, it’s the Evan Almighty Wessel Burger, which shall from now on be called the No. 3 burger. (That, coincidentally, is Wessel’s jersey number.)

After watching Sunday night’s 78-65 whupping of the University of Kansas by the Shockers, B.S. Sandwich Press co-owner Jodi Buchanan was impressed with WSU junior Wessel’s leadership on the court, she said. He scored 12 points with four three-point shots and tied his season-high with nine rebounds.

Buchanan felt inspired to create a burger in his honor, a black Angus steak burger topped with cheddar, bacon and spicy fried pickles. She called it the “Evan Almighty Wessel Burger” and put it on the food truck’s menu on Monday.

On Tuesday, she got a call from the Wichita State University athletic department compliance officer, who informed her that NCAA bylaw prohibited the use of a student athlete’s name or picture to promote a commercial product.

Korey Torgerson, WSU’s assistant athletic director for compliance and student services, said it’s part of his job to alert businesses or individuals when they’re violating NCAA rules. He’s required to make a call and follow it up with a cease-and-desist letter, which B.S. Sandwich Press will be receiving soon. It’s not a part of his job he always enjoys, he admitted, especially when he knows the violators have good intentions.

People can still order the burger from B.S. Sandwich Press, which will be set up at the watch party at the Field House sports bar, 3825 E. 17th St., starting at 4:30 p.m. on Thursday. And they can still appreciate its spirit.

They just can’t call it the Evan Almighty Wessel Burger.

“We put the spicy fried pickle chips on it because they bring an unexpected kick,” Buchanan said. “And I think that’s kind of what Evan Wessel brings to every game.”

What are your WSU watch party plans?

The Shockers will play Notre Dame in the Sweet 16 on Thursday in Cleveland. If you are planning a watch party, are trying to figure out a creative way to watch the game while working, or are a former Kansan watching from out of state, The Eagle wants to hear from you. Go to http://www.kansas.com/sports/college/wichita-state/article16134329.html to share your plans.

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