Originally posted on The Other Paper  |  Last updated 9/9/11
Who says hard work doesn't pay off?  For Wisconsin-Green Bay walk-on basketball player Eric Valentin, it meant getting the best news of his young lifetime. On Tuesday, at a practice for The Phoenix basketball squad, coach Brian Wardle surprised his 5-foot-4 guard by offering him the team's last scholarship for the 2011-12 season. It was an emotional moment for Valentin and a life long dream realized-- and it was all caught on video. Valentin, who stands almost a full foot shorter than the average college basketball guard was rewarded by Wardle for the young man's "hard work and character," but not without some ribbing before he handed Valentin the official document.  On the first day of his senior year, the coach singled out Valentin in front of the team and asked him "if he needed money or a job" because it seemed like his young charge was preoccupied during the practice. It was then, Wardle said, "I found you a full-time job" and handed the scholarship papers to a unsuspecting...
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