Improved Auburn basketball walk-on could play professionally overseas
Auburn basketball walk-on Lior Berman could end up continuing his playing career once his days on the Plains are done according to AL.com’s Joseph Goodman, who penned a piece praising AU’s “Rudy” ahead of the Tigers’ March Madness first-round matchup against Iowa.
“Berman is like the Rudy of basketball except that Berman actually contributes real minutes to Auburn’s rotation and he has worked so hard in college that he might actually be good enough to play pro basketball overseas,” Goodman wrote of the former 3x Alabama 6A state champion at Mountain Brook.
Berman has understood that his spot is quite literally earned and not given. He never received a scholarship after steadily improving for four years due to the penalties sanctioned on the program relating to former Auburn basketball assistant Chuck Person. He acknowledged that journey when speaking to reporters on March 15. “The coaches and the players give everyone a chance, so I’m grateful for that, but you really got to put in the work,” Berman said. “You can’t just show up to practice. You have to work in the morning and at night to do the best with what you have, and I feel like I’ve done a pretty good job of that.”
Bruce Pearl admits Lior Berman would have Auburn basketball scholarship if not for NCAA restrictions
Berman playing regular minutes at all the past two seasons is a testament to his progress. As Goodman notes, players tend to either receive scholarships or move on from the program altogether.
Bruce Pearl admitted that if not for the NCAA’s sanctions on the program stemming from the bribes Person took as an assistant.
“If not for the scholarship penalty the last two years, Lior would have been on scholarship, so he’s like a scholarship player for sure,” Pearl said. “He’s a great teammate. He’s grateful for the opportunity he’s been given at Auburn, and he goes to work every day.”
Berman won’t ever receive that scholarship, but it may come out in the wash when he’s suiting up professionally overseas upon moving on from Auburn.