Kerr juggles finance and football

The life of a walk-on is far from glamorous. That doesn’t mean there aren’t rewarding moments.

Armani Kerr realized one of those last fall, when he saw the first playing time of his Florida State career against Alabama State. A junior linebacker, Kerr stopped a run up the middle in the fourth quarter.

“My teammates were behind me, cheering me on,” Kerr said. “They wanted to see me play. It was a fun moment.”

Playing time may be rare but it is a cherished memory and one that will help motivate Kerr as he moves into his senior year. And Kerr also realized another dream earlier this month when he earned his bachelor’s degree in Finance.

Juggling football and a rigorous major presents challenges but Kerr has been diligent in learning on and off the field.

“You just have to know your why and you have to keep God first and have faith,” Kerr said. “Being a walk-on, you know it’s tough. There are going to be days when you want to quit or you want to give up but you have to look at your why. Don’t focus on the result, just trust the process and work on the little things.”

Kerr said he has been inspired by his father, who is in the commercial real estate business. He has learned about the business through conversations with his dad but Armani said his preference would be to work for a private equity firm or help manage a hedge fund.

The new football staff has only spent five months with FSU players, whether it was on campus or through video meetings, but Kerr has made an impression on linebackers coach Chris Marve.

“Armani is an exemplary student-athlete,” Marve said. “He is extremely passionate and disciplined about his academic pursuits and athletic undertakings. I’m thankful I get to coach someone as committed as Armani is.”

And Kerr is also looking forward to year 1 of playing for coach Mike Norvell, who began his career at Central Arkansas as a walk-on. 

“He tells us that the best guy is going to play,” Kerr said. “He tells us that he is going to give us an opportunity. He tells walk-ons to work hard, focus a lot on special teams, get in your playbook, watching film so that when your name or number is called you’ll be ready.”


  1. Jerry Kutz

    I have had the opportunity to meet Armani a number of times at the Seminole Booster office where he works part time. Its pretty impressive how he is able to manage his time to play football and take care of his academic work load.
    We’ve had some good talks and I find him to be a very bright guy, who can articulate his thoughts and feelings diplomatically and is very committed to the Seminoles.
    The Boosters hire several players each year to do administrative tasks and Armani has been a regular. We started hiring players a while back (when I was there) and it works great both for the Boosters and for the student-athletes because of the proximity of the Booster office to the athletic center and apartment complex where the football players live. Booster also has a hundred of more student-athletes who volunteer to make phone calls to thank donors.
    I think it helps the players understand the role donors play in funding their scholarships, who they wouldn’t otherwise get to know. It helps the morale of the Booster staff who get to know the student-athletes, the people they are working hard to fund scholarships for. And its just good, convenient, work experience for the players which is easy to monitor for compliance.

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