Friday, January 7, 2011

That's what the LUCK I'm Talking About

The real world is a brutal place.  I officially started my journalism career three-and-a-half years ago, and now define a good day as having no bills in my mailbox or finding a dollar worth of quarters that someone dropped in the laundry room,  that makes cleaning my clothes just a little less expensive.

It's nothing like college.

I long for the days when I could roll out of bed around noon, grab a pair of sweatpants, throw on my Tigers hat and  head to class for, at most, 90-minutes.  That was productive.  It was my "day at the office."

Weekends started Wednesday night at Ricks.  Meetings consisted of compiling strategies for beer pong and flip cup and the most heated debates were over "blonde or brunette".

I reminisce on my favorite four years to say, Andrew Luck..."well done."

The Stanford redshirt sophomore, who just lit up Virginia Tech in the Orange Bowl, was considered the concensus Number One pick in April's NFL draft.

However, he passed on the chance to cash in on millions in favor of enjoying another year in college.

I'll admit, when I first read Luck was going back to Palo Alto my reaction was, "this guy is a moron.  That's a lot of money!"

But, if I've learned anything since graduating from Michigan State in 2007 (besides re-racking with four cups is usually a waste), it's that no paycheck can replace your collegiate years.

I recently went home for Christmas and New Years and had the chance to meet up with some of my best friends, most of whom I met at MSU.

Pretty much every conversation started with "remember that time when...," or "I can't believe we did..."  And we tell the same stories every time we hangout as if they just happened.  And probably will for the rest of our lives.

In a time when college athletes care more about their draft stock and less about the fact that they have a chance to get a top-tier education, it's refreshing to see a decision like Luck's.

He said his primary reason for going back to Stanford was to finish his degree in architectural design.  Good for him.  Even if he has other motives like winning a Heisman, not wanting to play for the Panthers, or even just the co-eds, Luck is taking full advantage of a period in his life he can never duplicate no matter how much he has in his bank account.

College sports has been polluted by pay-to-play scandals, boosters with pockets as deep as the ocean, and conference commissioners concerned more about TV contracts than graduation rates.

I'm not condemning players who decide to leave early and make the jump to the pro's.  I would too.  Even with the NFL implementing a rookie pay scale, Luck is likely passing up on at least a five-year $20-million contract.  He's going to have to be a hell of an architect to make that kind of cash.

For Luck, this is what felt right.

He is already regarded as one of the best players in college football, but from here on out, Luck should be commended for being one of the most genuine athletes above all else.

No comments:

Post a Comment