Mocs Will See a Few Alumni Play in Homecoming Game
Chattanooga-(WDEF-TV) It’s homecoming for Chattanooga this weekend.
That’s always a big time for any university to welcome back their alumni.
But believe it or not, the Mocs will have five alumni that will actually play in the game, including the starting quarterback.
Nick Tiano is one of five guys on the team that have already earned their undergraduate degree at UTC, and there are four other players who transferred to Chattanooga after graduating from another college.
Mocs coach Rusty Wright says it’s not surprising these days to see more graduates playing college football.
Said Wright:”We have them all summer now for four years, so they are graduating ealier. They’re taking. You know back when we were in school, you only took 12 hours a semester. Now everybody is taking fifteen, so it speeds the clock up. It does that.”
But a few of the graduates admit it feels kind of funny to have your diploma, and you’re still playing college football.
Said punter Colin Brewer:”You know I always imagined myself once I graduated I’d be off in the real world. But the fact that I graduated, and I’m still here working on an MBA. It’s kind of weird, but it’s a pretty cool thing.”
Said Tiano:”It’s definitely a weird mind set because you’ve got these 18-year-old guys that walked in the door, and they’re taking their first college classes and going to tutoring and all that kind of stuff. It’s just funny having been through that and kind of see it through a different lens.”
Said Wright:”It’s a good thing because usually when guys graduate early they’ve got things in place. They’re organized. They’re responsible. They know how to get things done, which usually makes them better football players.”
Jerrell Lawson is certainly a great example.
He’s a graduate already dreaming of putting his M-B-A studies to use.
Said Lawson:”Long term goal, I eventually want to own my own business, whether it be a work-out facility or something like that. Just giving back to the kids from where I’m from. Just showing them they can reach their full potential if they just work hard at it.”
Nick Tiano admits there are some perks to being a graduate college football player.
Said Tiano:”Your course load is smaller. Your classes are tough, but the course load is definitely smaller. Mine is all on-line. I can come in and get all my stuff for football done for the day. Sit down on the computer. Do school work for a little bit in the afternoon. That’s about it. It’s nice.”
Reporter:”Is that just for quarterbacks?” (laughter)
Said a laughing Tiano:”Special program. Yeah.”