Vanderbilt walk-on Mark Panu gets surprise scholarship - WKRN News 2

Vanderbilt walk-on Mark Panu gets surprise scholarship


It's not rare for radio stations around the Mid-State to have Vanderbilt football coach James Franklin call in without notice.  However, the way Franklin surprised on his players this week is starting to go viral.

During a team meeting earlier this week, Coach Franklin surprised junior fullback Marc Panu with a full scholarship to the university.  Prior to the 2012-2013 academic year Panu had been playing as a walk-on.

In the video of the surprise posted on YouTube, Franklin highlights some of Panu's better plays during practice before giving him the scholarship.

"You want to watch a guy who is trying to find a role on this team?" Franklin says in the clip.

He goes on to show a few of Panu's impressive blocks from the previous day's practice and then walks to the edge of the frame before holding a single piece of paper over his head saying, "That's why I'm so proud to let Marc Panu know that he's got a full scholarship."

Panu walked-on to the team in 2009 as a scout linebacker, winning the team's Defensive Scout MVP award that season.

The next season, Panu suited up for 11 of the 12 team's games playing on special teams and as a linebacker.

In 2011, Panu made the biggest impact of his college career, moving to fullback.  He played in eight games that year, backing up Fitz Lassing.

To watch the video, visit

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