Thursday, October 9, 2014

Cover Boy Luck

He’s not at Kardashian publicity levels yet, but this 25-year-old Spring Branch ISD graduate has suddenly caught the attention of national sports editors and reporters.

From the full-color magazine covers of Sports Illustrated and Men’s Journal to Sunday’s Sports section of the New York Times, Indianapolis Colts quarterback and Stratford High grad Andrew Luck is scoring plenty of points as the NFL’s next big star player.

Luck, who has led the NFL Colts to two playoff appearances including a division title, graduated from Stratford High as a co-valedictorian in 2008.

On Thursday evening, he will lead the Colts in a nationally televised game against the Houston Texans.  Indianapolis has won three in a row.

During his high school quarterback career, Luck threw for 7,139 yards and 53 touchdowns, and rushed for another 2,085 yards at Stratford. Later at Stanford University, he was runner up for the Heisman Trophy in 2010 and 2011. He was selected first overall in the 2012 NFL Draft.

Luck is the son of Oliver Luck, a former NFL quarterback for the Houston Oilers who was CEO of the Harris County-Houston Sports Authority, and Kathy Luck. He is the oldest of four children, Mary Ellen, Emily and Addison, all of whom reside in Morgantown, W. Va., where Oliver Luck is now the athletic director at West Virginia University.

Featured on the cover of the Sept. 2 Sports Illustrated cover, young Luck is praised for standing in the “upper echelon of NFL signal callers.” In his interview with writer Andy Benoit, Andrew’s humble, straight-forward speaking style shines through. Here’s what the cover states:

“This is for a feature story arguing that you’ll be the Best QB In The NFL by the end of this season. Thoughts?” Benoit asks. Andrew Luck shrugs. “Well, . . .thanks. Lot of work to do to get to that.”

September’s cover story in Men’s Journal, meanwhile, says that its editors and writers “walked away with the sense of a man who is thoughtful and poised beyond his two years in the [NFL].”

Men’s Journal editors also shared a variety of reasons that Luck is one quarterback to put your money on this season – and in the future.  Here are three intriguing Luck magazine insights:

He Has the Footwork of a Soccer Player
He made the transition from the pitch to the gridiron as a kid, but he lived in Germany long enough to figure out how Europeans play the beautiful game. If you look close enough at Luck scrambling on the field, you can see some of the old soccer player in this footwork.

He’s Brainy Off the Field
We’ve all heard he went to Stanford, but he also likes logic puzzles, is interested in architecture, and tries to get teammates to play Settlers of Catan with him. He’s even read all the books that spawned HBO’s Game of Thrones, but doesn’t care to watch the game itself (I don’t want my vision of the world and the characters to be ruined,” he says.)

He’s No Flame-Out
You hear of professional athletes figuring out new and more elaborate ways to spend their millions, and then there’s Luck pulling out a Samsung flip phone from around 2007. One of the best young players in the NFL has never owned an iPhone, and when his previous flip phone broke several months back, he simply went on Amazon and bought a new one. All Luck cares about is that the phone “gets the job done.”

The Sunday, Oct. 5, New York Times, meanwhile, noted in its NFL Matchups section that Luck has thrown for more touchdowns in the team’s first four games this season than predecessors Johnny Unitas and Peyton Manning ever did.

“Andrew Luck, Indianapolis’s third-year star from Stanford, is off to such a productive start, he could rewrite the franchise’s record books,” the newspaper stated.


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