HUNTINGTON — Marshall wide receiver Stone Scarcelle knows that his parents gave him one heck of a name to live up to.
At the time of his birth, Mike and Cricket Scarcelle likely didn’t know the impact the name may have, but as their son gets into his third year at Marshall, he is proving that the name befits his mindset.
The former walk-on turned scholarship receiver from Royersford, Pennsylvania has consistently made plays that have drawn praise from coaches and players alike.
It is all part of a mentality that earned him the scholarship earlier this year.
Scarcelle said it was that stone-like resolve that helped him ascend through the tough times as a walk-on.
“The one quality that I think makes it real is that you never give up,” Scarcelle said. “There’s a lot of parts where you do want to tap out and you do want to give up and you do ask yourself, ‘Man, do I really need to be here? I’ve got family at home.’ It’s just about pushing through those times, knowing that you made this decision for a reason and you’re here for a purpose.”
That purpose is showing itself each time that Marshall gets into the team portion of practice.
Scarcelle opened fall camp with a day-one performance that was the most noteworthy of any receiver, hauling in tough passes in traffic and showing a grit that resonated with coach Doc Holliday.
At the time, Holliday raved about Scarcelle’s day, but tempered it by saying that the team isn’t in pads yet and the real tests were to come.
Ten days later, Scarcelle made another play over the middle for the offense that left wide receivers coach Dallas Baker sprinting down to the goal line to congratulate him.
“You live for those moments,” Scarcelle said with a grin. “Those are the moments you practice and work so hard for, you know? That’s why you work. Hopefully, that transitions to the game and it goes on from there.”
Baker explained the excitement that he — and the rest of the team — feel when they see the Thundering Herd’s lone Pennsylvania representative make a play.
“I told Stone from the beginning that we didn’t believe in scholarship or walk-on,” Baker said. “The best players are going to play. ‘Don’t worry if you are a walk-on or a scholarship guy. Just go out and make plays. That’s blocking, knowing assignments, catching the ball.’ From the first time he got here until now, he’s steady in progress, so I’m very happy for that kid. To know Stone’s story and see where he’s going, you have to get excited.”
Scarcelle’s success is not by accident.
When a conversation about Scarcelle’s performance came up after practice, Marshall assistant strength and conditioning coach Billy Brown chimed in.
“I love that kid,” Brown said. “He’s worked harder than anyone this offseason. I couldn’t be happier for him. As a program, that’s the type of kid you want as an example.”
Scarcelle credited that offseason mentality to Holliday and the message that he repeatedly gives players.
“Doc preaches consistency every day and I really just took that by the horns and really just tried to implement that into everything I did: sleep, eating, practice — the little stuff,” Scarcelle said. “It carries over and creates more confidence in your game, going into it when you are doing more consistent things off the field.
Royersford is a town that is just over 30 miles northwest of Philadelphia, which might explain Scarcelle’s Philly toughness that has helped him ascend to a more prominent role as a special-teams fixture and, now, in the mix at receiver, which is a far cry from where he started on his run with the Herd.
“He was a non-recruited player as a walk-on, to be honest, but we thought he had some skill set and he just goes to work,” Holliday said. “We do a great job of developing players and he’s a guy that’s continued to develop and work extremely hard and, like I said, if you’re tough and you love ball, chances are, good things will happen.”
While his status and number of repetitions may have changed from 2017 to 2019, Scarcelle’s mindset has not.
For lack of a better word, his mindset is still stone — or Stone, in this case.
“You just can’t give up, period,” Scarcelle said. “Each day, you just keep pushing toward that goal.”