May 6, 2007

Walking on to success

This year's Scarlet Knights seem to be hungrier than ever. Now that they have tasted success, their craving is becoming that much more intense. But for years, a group of players have been coming into camp with a different kind of hunger. Those players are called walk-ons, each one salivating for a spot on the playing field.

The Indianapolis Colts' Gary Brackett is probably the most notable walk-on to ever wear the scarlet and white. Brackett walked on to the team in 1999 and went on to become one of the greatest linebackers in Rutgers history.

More recently, a defensive tackle by the name of Ramel Meekins shunned the notion that he was too small to play major college football. Many schools shied away from Meekins because of his size, but after a stellar college career that culminated with a contract from the Indianapolis Colts, Meekins could be the next Rutgers walk-on to achieve success on the professional level.

Meekins leaves behind a Rutgers team stacked with players who joined the team without the luxury of a scholarship. This year, there were over twenty walk-ons on the spring roster. Returning starter Brandon Renkart has been on a wild ride since joining the Scarlet Knights. He joined the team after excelling at quarterback in high school. From there he tried wide receiver, safety, outside linebacker and ultimately saw time at middle linebacker this spring following the injury to Ryan D'Imperio.

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