College Dropout Earns $8.5 M in Poker Win

Who says you have to have a college degree to make money?

Joe Cada doesn't.

A college dropout, Cada's now a multimillionaire after winning $8.5 million Tuesday in Las Vegas. Cada, 21, is the youngest person ever to win the World Series of Poker.

Cada, surrounded by his millions, said on "The Early Show" from Las Vegas that the money is "pretty sweet."

How did he do it?

Cada won the tournament in a preflop.

"I raised it up to $3 million, he made it $8 million, and I moved in for like $60 some million, and he called," Cada said. "I was kind of too scared to look so I just had my back turned, hoping it would work out for the best."

Cada had two nines, trouncing his opponent who held just a jack and a queen of diamonds.

A first-time player in the World Series of Poker, Cada said he'd looked forward to turning 21 for years so he could participate. Cada said he got his start playing cards with his friends at a "young age."

"I was really excited to play," he said. "It's a really long shot because there's 6,500 people in the tournament. But I was still looking forward to playing in it."

However, Cada said playing for up to 12 hours straight some days was "pretty surreal."

"You kind of get in the zone after a while," he said. "The tournament lasted for about 10 days total. Once you start playing for a long time, it was just like you had to wake up and go and play another day."

During the tournament, Cada said he was up and down with his success. At the beginning of the tournament he had the most chips of any player, but on the eighth day he was getting low on chips.

"Fortunately everything worked out well," he said.

As for support, Cada's said his mother, Ann, was skeptical of his involvement in gaming and the tournament because she works as a blackjack dealer at a casino in Detroit.

"She'd always see people gambling and you know, lose money, so she was always kind of nervous about me playing poker for a living," he said. "It brought her to tears when I won the thing. She said she was really proud of me."

So does Cada plan to go back to college now that he can afford it?

He told "Early Show" co-anchor Maggie Rodriguez that isn't his plan, saying he isn't going back "any time soon."
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