The Andrew Luck Heisman Trophy campaign got off to a solid, albeit fairly low key start Saturday against the San Jose State Spartans. Luck threw for two touchdowns and rushed for a third in the Stanford Cardinal opener against the Spartans. Luck left after three quarters with a line of 17 of 26 for 175 yards, two passing touchdowns, 9 rushing yards and one rushing touchdown.
The Cardinal entered the game as heavy 30 point favorites and led the Spartans 43-3 when Luck left the game. The Spartans had a couple modest opportunities to stay in the game, but they made several mistakes to set up Luck and the Cardinal offense in prime position. The Cardinal rushing and passing attack does not need much in the way of opposing help and quickly took advantage each time.
Luck's performance wouldn't really qualify as "Heisman"-worthy, but given that it was the first game of the year, he really wasn't going to get many bonus points from a monster performance against the struggling Spartans. And considering the opposition, Luck didn't really have to exert himself too get his numbers. He compiled much of his stats on shorter underneath passes, with some end zone passes mixed in. He struggled a bit with anything intermediate or long, although he didn't have to air it out too frequently.
Andrew Luck is in an interesting position this year. He is the Heisman favorite and also the favorite to be the number one pick in the draft. He can roll up big numbers and win the Heisman Trophy, but if he struggles with some of the throws required at the NFL level, scouts and draft pundits could pick him apart as the draft approaches. As the strength of schedule increases, he'll need to show he can hit the tough throws further down the field to maintain his number one draft pick status.