It’s hard for anyone to get worked up over the Browns draft picks this season, considering they used picks this year to draft Brady Quinn, and to trade for Shaun Rogers and Corey Williams. But I currently am openly rooting for one of the seven players that the Browns made an offer to out of mini-camp. His name is Austin Scott, and if he in any way makes an impact for the Browns this season, I will be a happy guy.
Austin Scott is a Penn State graduate and was not drafted because he did not play the majority of his senior season for the Nittany Lions. He was dismissed from the team once he was charged with rape. This accusation effectively ruined his college football career, to say nothing of what it did to his reputation. Upon his arrival at PSU, Scott was one of the best running backs in Pennsylvania High School history, but never really had an opportunity to shine for the Blue and White, partially because of his performance, partially because all things being equal, Joe Paterno gives the playing time to the upperclassmen.
Scott never had that chance to get JoePa’s benefit of the doubt, he never had a chance to enjoy his final days playing in front of the home crowd in Happy Valley. But, in April, Scott was excused of all charges that were leveed against him, which presumably will allow him to continue focusing solely on the game of football.
This article is not about to turn into a diatribe on how men accused of rape are guilty before proven innocent, although it very easily could. If he would have been found guilty of that charge, he would be worthless to the world, and rightfully so. This is just about a kid who’s life was ruined through no fault of his own, and his attempt to put it back together. I was happy to see that Scott was offered a contract, even though it is the first of many steps in his attempt to make the final Browns roster. But for a kid that has already been through some of the hardest times in his life, Austin Scott probably doesn’t blink at the long odds ahead of him, he is just grateful for the opportunity.