CALABRO: Luck was more than a football player

Published:
Updated:
Dave Calabro

Andrew Luck is more than a football player. That was clear to me when I first met him.

It was just months before the 2012 NFL draft and Andrew was on a Stanford University practice field throwing long bombs to receivers. NFL coaches watched the workout and were amazed about this young kid’s talent.

After the workout with all the NFL’s top brass watching, Luck rode his bike across campus to do interviews.

My first interview with him was in the college library! That was my first indication that he was more than a football jock. This guy was smart. He was wise beyond his years. He was polite and thoughtful.

He asked about me and my family. It was clear to me he was a book nerd who happened to be a great football player!

Over the past seven years, I had a chance to get to know Andrew the person.

I interviewed him every Monday in private, win or loss. Over the past four years, he was in a lot of pain. From the shoulder injury, to ribs and kidneys, Luck was never healthy. Luck never complained publicly or privately about his lousy offensive line.

Luck is not a guy who does things less than 100 percent, so he didn’t want to sell the Colts short. He made a decision to move forward in his life.

The mental and emotional toll caught up with him.

Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck speaks during a news conference following the team's NFL preseason football game against the Chicago Bears, Saturday, Aug. 24, 2019, in Indianapolis. The oft-injured star is retiring at age 29. (AP Photo/AJ Mast)
Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck speaks during a news conference following the team's NFL preseason football game against the Chicago Bears, Saturday, Aug. 24, 2019, in Indianapolis. The oft-injured star is retiring at age 29. (AP Photo/AJ Mast)

Luck is an amazing man. He has a big heart for kids. He often would stop by Riley Hospital just to visit kids and families that needed a little encouragement.

I will never forget this summer when he showed up at a Summer camp late. He is never late. Luck had a big smile on his face and quietly told me he had just found out that he was going to be a dad. Andrew told me he was excited and terrified!

Life is short. Luck is more than just a football player.

Thanks #12 for being more than just a great football player.

Dave Calabro is WTHR's Sports Director.