Every Schollie Alert is the same, and yet they're also different. It's the human element that makes it -- the stunned look on the player's face, the exuberance of his teammates, his reaction after the news set in.
I think the reason Schollie Alerts are so popular is because it's the promise of the American Dream distilled into a 120-second video.
Think about it: walk-ons get all of the struggle of being a college football player and none of the payoff. They wake up at 5 a.m. like the rest of the team, run and lift and puke like the rest of the team, practice like the rest of the team, yet they don't get the compensation of playing time and, obviously, a scholarship. They sacrifice their time, their bodies, and their money, all for the good of the team, on the hopes that maybe some day they'll earn a role on the team and a scholarship.
Then, in an instant, that dream comes true.
Andrew Hawkins and Learfield Studios created a show called "Granted" in which Hawkins will spotlight walk-ons becoming scholarship football players.
First up: Toledo tight end AJ Harrison.
Hawkins's own story is similar to that as a walk-on.
A 5-foot-7 wide receiver, he played at Toledo and appeared on the reality show 4th and Long, in which he and other NFL hopefuls competed for a training camp invite. He finished second and played two seasons in the Canadian Football League before eventually catching 209 passes across six seasons for the Cincinnati Bengals and Cleveland Browns.
He now has a multi-media career with work appearing on LeBron's production company, Amazon, the Discovery channel and, now, a gig where he travels around college football giving life-changing news.
Here's hoping for lots and lots of "Granted" episodes in the near future.