Tierney Lawlor isn't a "walk-on" anymore... | The Boneyard

Tierney Lawlor isn't a "walk-on" anymore...

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DavidinNaples

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TLAW 7.jpeg


There was very little information in the tweet sent out by Breanna Stewart, two years ago, announcing defending National Champion UConn was looking for walk-on players. Missing from Stewie’s tweet was the reality of the offer. In exchange for vomit inducing workouts, endless plane & bus travel and relentless criticism from a perfectionist coach, takers would have minimal playing time, no social life and early morning philosophy exams after yet another flight delay. It was a deal with the devil that only two brave souls signed up for. Tierney Lawlor and Briana Pulido made that bargain, survived the entire season and shared in that magical 40-0 season & National Champion victory over previously undefeated Notre Dame. (Saying that never gets old..!) :cool:

By last summer, UConn had recruited four highly regarded guards and the roster seemed crowded, especially at that position. Many wondered if TLAW, who is not on scholarship, would come back out. There was nothing more to prove for the three sport star from Ansonia and little to improve upon after the perfect record & nationally televised beat down of the Irish. T, as her teammates call her, had played in 31 games, shot 42.1% from beyond the arc and swished a perfect 3 in Madison Square Garden against California. Why come back out & endure six more months of pain for what promised to be less playing time? Probably, for the same reason she ended up with a 2nd degree black belt in Martial Arts before turning 18.

Then Sadie Edwards transferred, Courtney Ekmark fractured her foot and Gabby Williams was moved to forward. The plethora of guards thinned out and Tierney saw action in 18 of UConn’s first 19 games. During one of UConn’s blowouts, as the announcers blathered on about the Huskies team, a bombshell was dropped. The humorous and often irreverent Geno Auriemma had confessed that the most improved player on this year’s team was….Tierney Lawlor. Not MoJeff, Saniya, Stokes or Tuck. It was TLAW.

Lawlor is on this team because of effort and heart. At 5’7”, she does not have the height to be a star. She is a grinder, skilled in many ways but not at the level of KML or MoJeff. Her gift is that invisible talent that comes from within, a perseverance that refuses to give up when logic and the odds point to failure. With Geno’s revelation, she earned something better than undefeated seasons or National Championships, the respect and admiration of the toughest coach to ever get a technical foul. Tierney is a “returning veteran from a National Champion team” and a sophomore who was acknowledged as “the most improved player” on a very talented team. High praise from the same man who used to yell at Diana Taurasi. Maybe Geno is just getting old & sentimental. Or maybe, TLAW has earned her spot on this team because she too is special, the kind of kid UConn is famous for producing… :)

Go TLAW..!!
Go Huskies..!!
 

HuskyNan

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I believe Briana Pulido is now on scholarship, as well as having earned her letter, but I don't think Tierney Lawlor is yet. I get David's point, though, that lumping these two players together and referring to them, not by name but simply as "the walk-ons," is a kind of put down that neither of them deserve. Both attend the same practices as the other players and work as hard yet they are sometimes put down. One unfortunate post recently claimed that a member of the UConn team "plays like a walk-on". That type of post is an insult to the player as well as to Briana and Tierney who do not deserve scorn. I think David is simply reminding us that both Tierney and Briana work hard and deserve an atta girl every now and then.
 

cferraro04

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I am very proud of Tierney...she is a hard working kid and testament that good things come to those who work hard for it as well as the notion that if something is worth having then it is worth working hard for it. I was hoping the post meant that Tierney had earned a scholarship because Tierney is the kind of kid that would understand the significance of the achievement. This comes from the guy who oversaw Tierney's 7 year journey to earning that second degree black belt so, I know a little something about what kind of kid she is. :)
 

cferraro04

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Stacey Marron was a walk-on that was later given a much deserved scholarship. I have always compared Tierney with Stacey...because when Stacey was inserted in the game she almost always hit a three.
 
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I have nothing but respect for both Brianna and Tierney. My questions are: if there are scholarships available, and these two have shown that they are willing to bust their tails for just a little game playing time, why not give them the scholarship? I know that Nan said that Brianna is on scholarship, why not Tierney? Was Polly's scholarship from track, and, is she still competing, or did she ever compete in that sport at UConn?
 

mr006

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Googling it quickly, one article did say that UConn converted Briana's track scholarship to basketball.

I hope that Tierney gets a scholarship also.
 

meyers7

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Stacey Marron was a walk-on that was later given a much deserved scholarship. I have always compared Tierney with Stacey...because when Stacey was inserted in the game she almost always hit a three.
Marci Czel was a walk-on also.
 
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I believe Briana Pulido is now on scholarship, as well as having earned her letter, but I don't think Tierney Lawlor is yet. I get David's point, though, that lumping these two players together and referring to them, not by name but simply as "the walk-ons," is a kind of put down that neither of them deserve. Both attend the same practices as the other players and work as hard yet they are sometimes put down. One unfortunate post recently claimed that a member of the UConn team "plays like a walk-on". That type of post is an insult to the player as well as to Briana and Tierney who do not deserve scorn. I think David is simply reminding us that both Tierney and Briana work hard and deserve an atta girl every now and then.

As a Connecticut resident Tierney is eligible for scholastic merit based scholarships. Our son was lucky to earn a full ride to UConn.
 

Aluminny69

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Was Jackie Fernandez a walk-on, or a non-scholarship player ( initially.) Is there a difference?
 

ChicagoGG

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Was Jackie Fernandez a walk-on, or a non-scholarship player ( initially.) Is there a difference?

She initially was a walk-on, but was awarded a scholarship every year following her freshman year.
 

Aluminny69

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She initially was a walk-on, but was awarded a scholarship every year following her freshman year.
Found this in her official bio:

"first offered a walk-on invitation to the UConn roster before being offered a full scholarship two weeks later...becomes UConn's first scholarship player from the state of Connecticut since Maria Conlon's graduation in 2004.."

While searching for info on Jackie, I came across some interesting info on her: Jackie has moved on from being an assistant Basketball coach at Fairfield University, as is currently Head Basketball coach at Spire Institute, a college prep school near Cleveland. (I never heard of it.)

Jacquie Fernandes - Women's Head Coach, SPIRE Basketball
 

Aluminny69

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So, here's the Jackie Fernandes story (heartwarming):

Fernandes averaged 18.7 points and 3.5 steals as a senior at Stonington High and helped the team to a 24-2 record and the 2006 Class M title. She was named All-State, but no Division I school recruited her.

Someone very significant noticed her.

"I remember going to a couple of her games and thinking to myself that she's a tough kid, a smart player," UConn coach Geno Auriemma said. "And I don't know what made me ask, but I asked where she was playing [in college] and I was told no one was recruiting her in Division I.

"I thought, 'Well, maybe she'd want to come to UConn.' And when I talked to her and her parents and told them what the deal was, they were thrilled."

The deal was, she could try out for the team as a non-scholarship player.

"[Auriemma] knocked on my door, totally out of the blue," Fernandes said. "I tried to block all of the rumors out of my mind and the next thing I knew I was [at UConn] watching a practice. Coach told me he wanted me on his team and I'm thinking, 'I've got to slow [her excitement] down here.' It was an easy decision to make. Who wouldn't want to play basketball at UConn?"

Fernandes earned a scholarship as a freshman, and Auriemma has renewed it each year.
 
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What about the high fives one of them gives out after threes? Is it always Pulido or do they both do it? I see other teams doing it sometimes also.
 
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Quite frankly, I would wear the walk-on moniker as a badge of honor. How many people out there can say they were good enough to walk-on to UCONN women's basketball. That Geno would even consider them no matter what the circumstances. There is a pretty good chance they will end up with three and possibly four N.C. rings for their efforts. And Tierney has to continue to earn her spot each season. And she should proud as a peacock to hear Geno thinks she is the "most improved player."
 

iamcbs

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I believe Briana Pulido is now on scholarship, as well as having earned her letter, but I don't think Tierney Lawlor is yet. I get David's point, though, that lumping these two players together and referring to them, not by name but simply as "the walk-ons," is a kind of put down that neither of them deserve. Both attend the same practices as the other players and work as hard yet they are sometimes put down. One unfortunate post recently claimed that a member of the UConn team "plays like a walk-on". That type of post is an insult to the player as well as to Briana and Tierney who do not deserve scorn. I think David is simply reminding us that both Tierney and Briana work hard and deserve an atta girl every now and then.
I thought Brianna Pulido was on a Track Scholarship? I rememer that being widely discussed last Season?
 

ChicagoGG

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I thought Brianna Pulido was on a Track Scholarship? I rememer that being widely discussed last Season?

I remember reading that it was a partial scholly and it was transferred to the WBB team.
 

Zorro

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It is absolutely no knock on TLaw, who has been magnificent, to say that if, for whatever reason, she has not been given a schollie and is not part of the main rotation, that she is still technically a walk-on, no? My hat is definitely off to both her and Polly.
 

KnightBridgeAZ

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I remember reading that it was a partial scholly and it was transferred to the WBB team.
Just to point out that there are no partial WBB scholarships; there is an issue with multi-sport athletes and how they are counted so in the cosmic scheme of things, it would make sense the make the transfer.
 

iamcbs

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I remember reading that it was a partial scholly and it was transferred to the WBB team.
Thanks CHI, I remember it being discussed but I didn't bother getting the particulars.
 
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I believe Briana Pulido is now on scholarship, as well as having earned her letter, but I don't think Tierney Lawlor is yet. I get David's point, though, that lumping these two players together and referring to them, not by name but simply as "the walk-ons," is a kind of put down that neither of them deserve. Both attend the same practices as the other players and work as hard yet they are sometimes put down. One unfortunate post recently claimed that a member of the UConn team "plays like a walk-on". That type of post is an insult to the player as well as to Briana and Tierney who do not deserve scorn. I think David is simply reminding us that both Tierney and Briana work hard and deserve an atta girl every now and then.
I think that kind of applies to all walk on players. They play without scholarship and endure a lot of hardships and difficult practices. I don't personally think that the term is derogatory in any way, shape or form. It might be interrupted by a minute few like that but in general, I think the vast majority appreciate and respect the walk on players. The fact that their names aren't mentioned as often and they're referred to in those terms by people who aren't inclined to remember their names makes them no different than scores of football players who NO ONE recognizes and yet do the exact same thing as these two girls do. In most cases their names ARE NEVER MENTIONED. It is just the way things are. These girls are terrific and I'm glad we have them but there are a massive amount of kids in other sports at UConn who would love to have their name uttered ONCE on live TV!
 
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