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Niners DT: Andrew Luck Would Not be Top Pick if he Played in SEC

Andrew Luck is such a strong NFL prospect there are teams privately happy to be playing poorly this season. Many franchises feel that being able to choose the Stanford quarterback in the draft will be a turning point for their organization. Luck is the consensus top pick, and widely regarded as one of the best quarterback prospects in recent history.

But one person isn’t too impressed by Luck, and feels that if the Heisman contender played in the SEC, he wouldn’t even be the top overall pick.

49ers defensive tackle Ricky Jean Francois, who went to LSU (pictured above in his college days), says he is a big college football fan. When asked about a potential Stanford-LSU national championship game, he began pumping up the SEC and knocking Luck.

“[A Stanford-LSU title game] will never happen,” Francois said in response to a reporter’s question Tuesday. “If it happens, Luck’s draft stock will fall. If he plays an SEC team, his stock will fall. I ain’t got nothing against him. He’s a Pac-12 guy. I’m not a Pac 12 fan at all, I’m an SEC guy. But if he ever plays against an SEC school, Alabama, LSU, that draft stock is going to fall. That will be one game they just don’t show the scouts.”

Francois insisted Luck would not be drafted number one overall if he had to play an SEC team.

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Shocker! Colts Would Strongly Consider Drafting Andrew Luck

One of the more interesting side stories this season in the NFL has been the race for the worst overall record in the league. The team that finishes with the worst record receives the top overall pick in the draft. This year, finishing with the worst overall record seems like a blessing.

Many football fans and media members feel so strongly about Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck‘s chances for success, that they view having the worst record in the league as a good thing. People have cleverly called this inverted race the “Suck for Luck” campaign. No surprise, the Colts would be interested in drafting Luck if they have the opportunity.

According to Jason Cole, Colts owner Jim Irsay strongly indicated the franchise would be willing to take Luck if they have the chance.

“Guys like that come along so rarely,” Irsay said, referring to Manning and what many are projecting of Luck. “Even if that means that guy sits for three or four years, you’d certainly think about taking him … you see what Green Bay did with [Brett] Favre and [Aaron] Rodgers and you’d like to be able to do the same thing.”

I’m not sure why this story was presented as news, or why I’m posting it. I might as well have told you that the Colts like good players, and that they also enjoy winning. Any team that has a chance to draft Luck would be foolish to pass up the opportunity. There are very few franchise quarterbacks in the NFL, and Luck looks like he’ll be one of them. About the only team that could screw up such an opportunity would be the Raiders; Al Davis would have gone for Luck’s receiver who runs a 4.3 40 instead.

What’s a matter, too early for that one?

Andrew Luck Makes One-Handed Catch on Trick Play (Video)

Week after week, Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck continues to impress us with his athleticism. Last year he grabbed our attention by trucking USC cornerback Shareece Wright on a fumble recovery. This time, it was Luck making a one-handed catch on a trick play against UCLA that stood out. What’s more, tight end Coby Fleener made an even more impressive one-handed touchdown catch to end the drive. Here’s video of both of the beautiful plays:

Yeah, you’ll see that on his Heisman Trophy reel all season. It’s bad enough that his passing numbers blow you away, but now he has to go out there and get his Andre Johnson on? Goodness gracious.

Andrew Luck Made the Right Call Staying at Stanford, Might Jim Harbaugh Follow?

Stanford sophomore quarterback Andrew Luck announced Thursday that he will stay at Stanford for junior season and pass on being the likely top overall pick in this April’s NFL Draft. Though Luck is returning for his junior year athletically, it will be his senior year academically; he will walk graduate with a degree in Architectural Engineering. In this day and age with a society that increasingly values the scheckle over the scruple, many fans — especially in Carolina — are calling Luck’s decision stupid. Before too many people crucify him for his decision, let’s examine the reasons behind his decision.

It’s become a trend for elite college quarterbacks to pass up the draft in favor of school. Tim Tebow, Sam Bradford, and Matt Leinart all returned for an extra season with Leinart and Bradford likely passing up the top overall pick. This precedent has proven to work for many QBs, Bradford in particular.  At Oklahoma, Bradford was fresh off a Heisman win and a spot in the National Championship Game. Rather than leave and be (presumably) the number one pick in the 2009 draft, Bradford stayed, got hurt, and missed the whole season. Talk about worse-case scenarios: stay in college, get hurt, still get taken number one, and get paid accordingly. If Luck simply stays healthy and doesn’t have a Jake Locker-type disaster of a year, he will remain on top of team’s draft boards, this time armed with a degree from Stanford and possibly a Heisman Trophy.

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Michele Tafoya Stiffarmed by Jim Harbaugh, Horse Collars Andrew Luck

One of the worst aspects of watching the Orange Bowl was seeing a television production focused on Jim Harbaugh’s future as much as the game at hand. The constant speculation of where the Stanford coach will go and what quarterback Andrew Luck will do detracted from the enjoyment of watching the second-half clinic put on by Stanford. Perhaps it’s fitting that Harbaugh caught ESPN reporter Michele Tafoya with quite the stiffarm after the game. It’s ok — Tafoya made up for it with her horse collar rundown of Andrew Luck. Check out the video:

Mike Tirico picked up on the sequence noting that Tafoya was showing off her 40-time with the chase down of Luck. I feel badly that she was stuck in that position of having to ask the question. I feel worse for guys like Harbaugh and Luck who couldn’t enjoy the fine moment they had earned because the media was too concerned about their next step. As for our thoughts on where Harbaugh lands, here you go.

Andrew Luck Reportedly Currently Leaning Towards Returning to Stanford, Not Draft

Andrew Luck is the consensus top NFL quarterback prospect in college football. The redshirt sophomore is expected to be the top overall pick in the draft if he elects to come out. Much like Matt Leinart in 2004, people expect the man who has led Stanford to an 11-1 season and Orange Bowl berth will come out of school. But what if he pulls a Leinart and returns? That scenario has been considered far less often, but it’s one proposed by Charlotte Observer columnist Scott Fowler.

In a blog post relayed by Pat Yasinskas, Fowler quotes a source who says Luck is currently leaning towards returning to school for his junior season. According to Fowler, “The source said he ‘knew’ Luck was leaning toward staying at this moment.”

“A lot can happen between now and Jan.15th,” said the source, referring to the date underclassmen must declare themselves eligible. “There will be a lot of conversations still to come. And whenever he goes pro, he will be a fantastic NFL quarterback. But this is a kid who truly enjoys college.”

A kid who truly enjoys college. Where have we heard that before? Oh yeah, Matt Leinart. I don’t know how accurate Fowler’s source is, and we don’t even know whether Luck’s current mindset matters, but the point is valid. Though many people are talking about which team will get Luck, there is no certainty that he even comes out. Remember, Luck is only a redshirt sophomore; he has two years of eligibility left and is no sure thing to leave school.

Why Andrew Luck Should Win Heisman Trophy Over Cam Newton

I understand the concept of integrity means little to many of you. I understand that the idea of amateurism means even less. But for some people, most notably the Heisman Trophy Trust, those two ideals are incredibly important and they’re the reasons why Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck should win the Heisman Trophy over Cam Newton, who was the most outstanding player in college football.

Because most people don’t bother to do the research and understand what the significance of certain awards are, here is the Heisman Trust’s Mission Statement:

The Heisman Memorial Trophy annually recognizes the outstanding college football player whose performance best exhibits the pursuit of excellence with integrity. Winners epitomize great ability combined with diligence, perseverance, and hard work. The Heisman Trophy Trust ensures the continuation and integrity of this award. The Trust, furthermore, has a charitable mission to support amateur athletics and to provide greater opportunities to the youth of our country.

Cam Newton was an incredible player for Auburn and led them to a 13-0 season and appearance in the National Championship Game. Newton threw for 28 touchdowns and only six interceptions while rushing for 1,409 yards and 20 touchdowns. He was a one-man wrecking crew and the best player in college football. The problem is his pursuit of excellence was not done with integrity, and it undermined amateur athletics.

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