120218-sw-gamer
Caption +

Pueblo East quarterback Luc Andrada throws the ball against Palmer Ridge in the CHSAA 3A Football Championships at the Neta & Eddie DeRose Thunderbowl at CSU-Pueblo on Saturday in Pueblo. Andrada said Air Force is the only football program he’s considering at the moment.

Show MoreShow Less

Luc Andrada ran and passed for 49 touchdowns and over 4,000 yards this season for Pueblo East. He reigns as the state’s 4A 100-meter sprint king.

And he’s considering only one college for football: The Air Force Academy.

Andrada told me last week he’s considering Colorado and Colorado State for track and Air Force for football.

The Falcons could be a strong fit for Andrada, who would become the fastest quarterback in the program’s history.

He ran a pro-style offense in high school, throwing for 3,135 yards and 33 touchdowns, but he has the elusiveness and toughness and intelligence to run the Air Force option.

Palmer Ridge football seniors leave a lasting impact on season, program

East coach Andy Watts is an Andrada believer.

“Luc would be a very good fit at the academy,” Watts says. “He has the work ethic and the ability to develop into a very good option quarterback.”

In Saturday’s state title game against Palmer Ridge, Andrada threw for 278 yards and three touchdowns while leading the Eagles back from an early deficit. Palmer Ridge prevailed, 47-38, but Andrada often shredded the Bears’ usually stingy defense.

He can throw on the run. He can throw out of the pocket. And he can scramble. In the second half, with East trailing and Palmer Ridge expecting a pass, Andrada landed a soaring, accurate sideline throw to Marvin London. It was superlative throw for a teen, and we’re talking any teen.

“He’s no stranger to putting the ball where it needs to be,” Watts says. “To me, that throw was no surprise. It didn’t tell me anything I didn’t already know.

“He’s got a big-time arm. If he were a little bit taller, I think a lot more people would be talking to him.”

Andrada, Watts says, is 5-foot-10. That’s short for the average D-1 football program, but typical for an Air Force quarterback. Chance Harridge, Shaun Carney, Kale Pearson and Arion Worthman all started for Air Force in the 21st century and all are under 6 feet.

Pearson, one of the underrated stars of the Calhoun era, is strikingly similar to Andrada. Pearson, blessed with sprinter’s speed and an accurate arm, led the Falcons to a 10-3 record in 2014.

East and Andrada are hurting after the loss to Palmer Ridge. Andrada threw two interceptions that were returned for touchdowns, which helped doom the Eagles.

But that wasn’t a typical performance. During one streak this season, Andrada went nine games and over 200 passes without an interception.

Northern Colorado recruited Andrada for football, but coaches saw him as an all-around athlete, not a quarterback. Watts says Air Force coaches see Andrada as a strong candidate to run the Falcons’ complicated option offense.

Load comments