WATCH: Eli Manning surprises Penn State walk-on with full-scholarship ride in memorable fashion

Former NFL QB Eli Manning with Penn State HC James Franklin and the walk-on.
Former NFL QB Eli Manning with Penn State HC James Franklin and the walk-on

Eli Manning was a guest of Penn State head coach James Franklin at practice as the former New York Giants quarterback spoke to the Nittany Lions team. During his speech, the former NFL quarterback did something pretty unforgettable. He announced that walk-on punter Barney Amor was getting a full scholarship with the team.

After Manning made the announcement, Amor’s teammates surrounded him in celebration. For Amor, the journey to the scholarship is an amazing one.


Amor is a sixth-year senior from Doylestown, Pennsylvania, which is over three hours from the Penn State campus. He joined the Nittany Lions in 2021 as a walk-on after playing four years at Colgate. He was Colgate's starting punter in 2019, averaging 42.1 yards per attempt, with 11 punts of over 50 or more yards.

The moment when @EliManning puts you on full scholarship >>>>>>>

In 2020, Colgate canceled its football season due to COVID-19, and after finishing his second undergraduate degree, he transferred to Penn State. Amor already has his Master's degree from Penn State. Nittany Lions special teams coach Stacy Collins spoke highly of Amor, saying in early August:

"Barney has done a great job, and to echo what coach [James] Franklin spoke to, he did a great job in the spring and continued to trend in the summer. ... He's put multiple days together and he’s done a nice job."

To have someone like Manning deliver the good news about getting a scholarship is great, given his football resume.

Eli Manning's college and NFL career

Eli Manning
Eli Manning

Eli Manning played collegiately at Ole Miss for four seasons (2000 – 2003), playing in 43 games. In his senior season in 2003, he threw for 3,600 yards passing, which led the SEC and was 10th in all of college football. The quarterback also led the SEC with 29 touchdowns and was also the 10th most in college football.

That year, he took home the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm award for the most outstanding senior quarterback and was the SEC Offensive Player of the Year.


He went first overall to the San Diego Chargers in the 2004 NFL Draft but was traded to the Giants. In his 16 seasons, all with New York, he was a four-time Pro Bowler, winning two Super Bowls and was the MVP in both games. Manning retired from the NFL in January 2020.

Eli Manning leaves his jersey retirement & ring of honor ceremony. Thank you, Eli!

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Edited by Akshay Saraswat
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