Andrew Luck Staying at Stanford: Dodging the Carolina Panthers a Solid Decision

Shaun McPartlinCorrespondent IIIJanuary 6, 2011

Cardinal fans know they will see at least one of these faces next season
Cardinal fans know they will see at least one of these faces next seasonMike Ehrmann/Getty Images

Andrew Luck just slapped the NFL—and the Carolina Panthers—in the face.  

Luck turned down millions to finish his degree in architectural design.

Have to respect a man who realizes the importance of a degree. But was this the right decision?

Two years ago, Sam Bradford found himself in the same circumstance. Should I leave Oklahoma after my Heisman-winning season, or should I stick around and give this college game another go?

We all know how that decision turned out.  

Bradford hurt his throwing shoulder and required surgery. If this happened while he was under contract with, let's say, the Detroit Lions, he at least could rest his right arm on a pile of Benjamins.

At the other side of the spectrum, this decision could work out for both Luck and whichever team is awarded the first overall selection next year.

Let's be honest. Who in their right mind wants to be a Carolina Panther right now? The team is in shambles. It cleaned house after winning two games this season. If that was the offer in front of me, I would gladly stay in college for another year.

As Adam Schefter of ESPN pointed out via Twitter, Peyton Manning made a very similar decision. He spurned the draft and the New York Jets, who had the first overall pick that year. The following season, he came out and was drafted by the Colts. The rest is history.

Who would want to see Manning in green, anyway?

For some, the decision is clear. Run to the NFL and take the money. College basketball stars sprint toward the NBA draft. Look at Kentucky's roster each year—filled with one-and-done players.  

You have to admire a kid who values his education. But we can't help but wonder what could have been. Especially those sad Carolina Panther fans.