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Scarlet Knights Academic Support Staff

Scott Walker
SCOTT WALKER
Executive Director, Academic Support

Since his arrival at Rutgers in 2003, Scott Walker has worked diligently to put Rutgers Athletics on the map academically as the Director of Football Academic support and most recently as the Executive Director of Academic Support Services for Student Athletes. In his role, Walker oversees the entire academic program for the Rutgers Student-Athletes.

During the previous eight years at RU, Walker has helped the football program establish unprecedented success in the classroom, further upholding the high academic standards of Rutgers University. The team has stood as a pillar for great achievement both on the field and in the classroom.

In the most recent NCAA Academic Progress Report (APR), the Rutgers football program was the lone state university on the list to be ranked in the top 10 percent nationally in APR for the fifth straight year. In addition, Rutgers was the lone institution to win four bowl games while earning the APR honor in the top 10 percent over the previous five-year span.

The Rutgers football squad received a No. 2 ranking nationally in 2011. The prior year, Rutgers ranked first nationally in APR. During the last six years under Walker’s guidance, the Rutgers football program has ranked in the top seven nationally and has achieved the top APR of any Football Bowl Subdivision state university in the nation.

Rutgers has had two National Football Foundation Scholar Athletes in Brian Leonard and Brandon Renkart during Walker’s tenure. Leonard received the prestigious Draddy Trophy, recognized as the “Academic Heisman,” in 2006. He and his staff – Jenna Beverly and Ramel Meekins – work diligently at ensuring that every Rutgers football player maximizes their potential in the classroom. They have made academic success a foremost priority for each student-athlete.

Prior to his tenure at Rutgers, Walker spent three seasons as an assistant football coach at Cornell. He was named the running backs coach at Cornell in the spring of 2001. Before joining the Cornell staff, he served five seasons at Georgia Tech, including three as the director of academics for the football team. In 1997, he was the assistant director of football operations. Prior to Tech, Walker was a coach at the University of Maine for six years, including the final two as the running game coordinator. Walker also spent time coaching at Purdue, Iowa and Texas.

Walker graduated from Princeton in 1984 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in geology. During his time at Princeton, he worked as the freshman defensive ends coach from 1982-84. In addition to attending college in New Jersey, Walker spent 15 years recruiting the New Jersey metropolitan area for various universities during his coaching career.

Scott and his wife, Michelle, have a son, Kyle.


Jenna Beverly
JENNA BEVERLY
Assistant Director/
Football Coordinator

Jenna Beverly arrived at Rutgers in September of 2004 bringing experience in academics and compliance from the University of Oregon and the University of Connecticut. Beverly’s current role as Assistant Director for Academic Support include, overseeing and coordinating Academic Support for the Rutgers football team.

Previous to this role, Beverly’s responsibilities at Rutgers included serving as an academic advisor for the football program, while also overseeing the Academic Support Services programs, including supplemental instruction, learning assistance, and tutoring. She was responsible for hiring, scheduling and monitoring Academic Services staff in accordance with NCAA regulations of these programs. In her time at Rutgers, the football program has been consistently in the top ten nationally in APR ranking. 

Prior to arriving “On The Banks,” Beverly served as a graduate assistant at the University of Oregon in compliance and then as an academic advisor, spending two years in each role. In between the two positions at Oregon, Beverly came back east for a brief stint at the University of Connecticut as a compliance assistant handling initial eligibility along with other duties. During her time at the University of Oregon, Beverly received her Masters Degree in Higher Education Administration.

Beverly, a native of Northbridge, Mass., graduated from the University of Kansas in 2000 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology. While at Kansas, she lettered her freshman year in softball and then worked with the women’s basketball program during her final three years.

Sheresides in North Brunswick, N.J. with her husband Gil and their son, Kaden.

   

Shawn TuckerSHAWN TUCKER
Assistant AD/Student Development

Shawn Tucker is in his third season as Assistant Athletic Director for Student-Athlete Development.

Tucker, a 2006 graduate of Rutgers University and a former standout at wide receiver on the football team, leads the Life Skills and development program for student-athletes. Through programming and counseling, the Life Skills initiative helps to fortify student-athletes at Rutgers with valuable information and tools to guide decision-making in critical life-shaping areas such as career choice, personal finance, leadership, civic involvement, and healthy lifestyle choices.

Tucker came to Rutgers from Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla. He was named team captain as a senior and helped lead Rutgers to its first of four consecutive football bowl championships in 2006. A four-year letterwinner for the Scarlet Knights, Tucker was a key member of two bowl squads during his career “On the Banks.”

As an undergraduate, Tucker served on the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. He graduated with a double major in Geography and Labor Studies in May 2007 and began working for the Office of Continuing Professional Education at Rutgers as a program coordinator for their T.E.E.M. Gateway program. While there, Tucker was a member of a staff that received the 2010 Diversity Leadership Award.

T.E.E.M. Gateway serves all parolees in Essex County, providing education and employment to all youth transitioning back into their community. Tucker’s specific responsibilities included working with youth in the areas of academic, personal, career and community development. Tucker also participated in the implementation of the YE2S Center, a partnership among Rutgers, Newark Public Schools, the City of Newark and Communities in Schools of New Jersey focusing on providing education and employment services for youth in Essex County. Tucker has also mentored youth in Newark through the Rutgers Green Rangers Mural program, which focused on the beautification and revitalization of Newark through the Arts, while also serving as a key collaborator in the New Jersey High School Dropout Prevention Campaign.

Currently pursuing a master’s degree in city and regional planning, Tucker and his wife Maria, reside in New Brunswick.

 

Ramel Meekins
RAMEL MEEKINS
Athletic Academic Counselor
 

FRED MARIANI
FRED MARIANI
Director of Player Development

Fred Mariani joined the Rutgers Football program in February of 2009. Mariani came to Rutgers after serving as the head football coach at Iona College for 11 seasons.

During his tenure as head coach of the Gaels, Mariani guided the program to 46 victories; including a 7-4 record and a share of the MAAC Football League Championship in 2007.

Prior to accepting his first head coaching position at Iona, Mariani served as the Offensive Coordinator/Recruiting Coordinator at Fordham University from 1994-97.

Mariani spent six seasons as the Offensive Line Coach and Recruiting Coordinator at Lehigh University before his stint at Fordham. Mariani's first Division I-AA coaching position came at Morehead State University, where he was named the Recruiting Coordinator and Offensive Coordinator.

Mariani began his coaching career at St. Joseph’s College in Rensselaer, Ind. where he also enjoyed a standout playing career as the starting guard for the Puma’s. He joined the staff in 1974 and helped guide St. Joseph’s to three conference titles (1976, 1977 and 1979) as the Offensive Coordinator and Assistant Head Coach. Mariani was inducted into the St. Joseph’s College Hall of Fame in 1999. 

Mariani began his football career as an offensive lineman at Don Bosco Prep. As a three-year letterman, Mariani helped guide Don Bosco to two-straight New Jersey State championships (1969-1970).

Mariani resides in Saddle River, N.J. His daughter, Brook, is a graduate of Iona.



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