…if you’re willing to work hard you can achieve anything you want. You just have to work hard. Don’t stop, don’t quit, you never know when that break will come; maybe tomorrow, maybe a couple of weeks from now. Keep working.Barrington Scott
Ball State University
Football Walk-on Running Back
2011: Starting Running Back, Earned Scholarship
2010: Transferred to Ball State, Did not play as a walk-on
2009: Red-shirt walk-on at Northern Illinois
Barrington tore his ACL his senior year at Snider High School in Fort Wayne, Indiana. Prior to his injury it looked like a couple of schools would offer him a scholarship. Upon graduation no scholarship offer came. He walked-on to Northern Illinois University expecting to get a scholarship quickly. But he was injured again. He red-shirted. During spring practice he was told he would have to wait another year on the scholarship. Barrington couldn’t wait. He decided to return home and walk-on at Ball State University. He earned a scholarship his second year.
WillofaChampion: Did you have to put in extra-time working out and practicing compared to the other players at Ball State?
Barrington: Maybe. Everyone is working hard. I work hard no matter what. But I don’t always know what the other guys are doing, so maybe.
WillofaChampion: Can you give me an example of what it looks like when you’re working hard and putting in extra time?
Barrington: At Northern Illinois I went to the Rec Club and worked-out after working-out with the team. I was trying to recover from my injury. When I got here (Ball State) I kept that pace up. I came early to practice and worked on a bike at the Rec Center, worked-out with the team, and worked out with a trainer when I went home. I never took a break and took no off season. I had to recover from my injuries.
WillofaChampion: Barrington, do you have to be mentally tougher as a walk-on compared to a scholarship player?
Barrington: Yes. Simply because it is hard; especially when you transfer and have to sit-out a year. You have to work your way up from the bottom. You can’t let little things get to you. You have to focus, do your best, and work hard. It can be a tough experience but you have to keep going.
WillofaChampion: How did your teammates receive you?
Barrington: When I first came I had to earn respect. Once people saw that I can play; then it was cool.
WillofaChampion: How did your coaches receive you?
Barrington: The coaches knew I would work hard. But they didn’t know if I could play since I’d been injured. They saw me in spring ball and I guess they were impressed.
WillofaChampion: Why do you think you’ve made it when other walk-ons do not?
Barrington: Focus. I don’t party. I don’t mess with the girls. I worry about school and football. I want to achieve my goals and dreams. So I work to stay focused; keeping God first. I spend time with the right people like my mentor Michael Ledo. I spend time with my mom. You need a strong, strong focus.
WillofaChampion: How did Michael Ledo become your mentor?
Barrington: Michael has been my mentor since I was 14 years old. I have been training with him since then. I have learned a lot of life lessons from him. He has kept me on track. He is the reason I am where I am today. (Michael Ledo is the President/CEO of AWP Sports Performance – www.awpsportsperformance.com)
WillofaChampion: What was it like when you got your scholarship?
Barrington: We had just finished conditioning. Coach Lustig (Running Backs coach) told me Coach Lembo (Head Coach) wanted to see me in his office. When I got there he told me I’d received a scholarship. It was somewhat out of the blue. I was real thankful. I had been working hard and doing what I was supposed to do. My teammates kept asking if I was on a scholarship yet. When my teammates asked that, I knew the coaches had to see it.
WillofaChampion: When you go through challenging times, who do you speak with to encourage you?
Barrington: Michael Ledo. Grandpa and Grandma.
WillofaChampion: How did Michael and your grandparents respond when you told them you had a scholarship?
Barrington: Everyone was real happy. My mom was real emotional. They were proud of me.
WillofaChampion: What impact has following your dream and earning it had on the rest of your life?
Barrington: That was a big achievement for me. But there are more things I want to do; bigger things. It does show me that if you’re willing to work hard you can achieve anything you want. You just have to work hard. Don’t stop, don’t quit, you never know when that break will come; maybe tomorrow, maybe a couple of weeks from now. Keep working.
WillofaChampion: What advice do you have for other athletes considering walking-on?
Barrington: Focus. Focus on what you need to do. Put God first. Stay around positive people.
Barrington is majoring in Sociology