MADISON — Eduardo Mora is like a lot of high school and college students.
The recent Madison High School graduate knows the importance of academics, enjoys sports, hanging out with friends and appreciates the style of athletic shoes.
All that and his humility come through as the inaugural national winner in the "Sneaker Shopping" fan episode that can be seen on YouTube. The program had been seen more than 800,000 times by Wednesday noon and could reach a couple of million views within a week.
In the episode, Joe La Puma, who hosts the program, asks Mora about some of his athletic shoes and what it is like trying to find stylish shoes in Nebraska.
Mora was flown out to New York for a couple of days last month where he got to stay in an expensive hotel, ate at the finest restaurants and got to tour The Complex headquarters — where “Sneaker Shopping” is produced — and meet with its chief financial officer.
“They treated me fantastic,” Mora said. “It was the best hotel. They took me out to restaurants. I had a great chauffeur. I got to meet the head of accounts and tour the studio.”
Then, of course, there was the shopping spree at Stadium Goods in New York, where Mora got to pick out four pairs of high-end athletic shoes during a shopping spree where he was alone in the store with the show’s host. The final pair, Cement 4s, was a surprise bonus.
“I’m just so grateful,” he said.
Mora — who mentioned Hibbett Sports in Norfolk and House of Hoops in Omaha as part of the program — and La Puma talked about various topics, including Mora attending the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in August. He will be attending as a Susan T. Buffett Foundation Scholarship winner.
Mora plans to major in finance and minor in political science. In high school, he played basketball, soccer and ran cross country.
“I switched it up all four years,” he said with a laugh.
Mora also was on the honor roll and involved in many extracurricular activities, including serving as president of the Madison Student Council his senior year.
The son of Susana Yanez of Madison was born in Norfolk but has Mexican heritage. The show learned that his favorite boxer is Canelo Álvarez because he is from Mexico, so they surprised Mora with an autographed boxing glove signed by the champ.
Mora said he plans to get a display case made for the glove and was especially appreciative of the effort that was made getting it for him.
Mora said he entered the contest about mid-May by making a 60-second video of himself. He said it took about 10 takes, but he still wasn’t happy with the entry he submitted. As a result, he said he was “a little surprised” to learn that he had won.
Along with the shopping spree and trip to New York, Mora said he is grateful for the contacts he made, including with the The Complex. They told him to stay in contact, including after he graduates from college.