LB Luke Kuechly-A Tackling Machine -
Former Boston College LB Luke Kuechly has been named to the 2023 Class of the College Football Hall of Fame. Kuechly was a tackling machine.
As a result, he set school, ACC, and NCAA records for career tackles.
Luke Kuechly in High School at St. Xavier in Cincinnati
Kuechly played both linebacker and safety at St. Xavier. In two seasons of varsity play, he racked up 277 tackles.
In his junior season, Kuechly gave everyone a preview of what would come later in his career. For example, in 2007 his stats included:
He helped lead his team to a 15–0 record and an Ohio State Championship.
As a senior at St. Xavier, he posted the following stats:
For what star ratings are worth, Kuechly was rated only a “3-star” prospect, the 44th-ranked linebacker in the country.
He visited Virginia, Duke, and Stanford before choosing Boston College as his college destination.
Luke Kuechly was A Thrill in Chestnut Hill
Kuechly led the ACC in total tackles as a freshman in 2009 with 158.
In addition, he also added 13 tackles for loss, 1 sack, and 1 INT (returned for a touchdown).
Kuechly posted double-digit tackles in 10 games that season, including each of the final nine games in a row.
As a result of his performance, Kuechly earned 1st Team All-ACC honors.
2010 Sophomore Season
For an encore to his outstanding freshman campaign, Kuechly stormed out of the tunnel on Saturdays to make 183 total tackles, which led the NCAA.
He posted 20 or more tackles in two games that season and double-digit tackles in every game.
Kuechly also added 10.5 tackles for loss, 1.5 sacks, and 3 INTs.
He was named a Consensus All-American and earned 1st Team All-ACC.
2011 Junior Season-Kuechly Hoisted Some Serious Hardware
Kuechly continued his quest of arriving at ball carriers in an angry mood by making 191 total tackles, leading the NCAA once again.
During two games that season, he made 20 or more tackles. Kuechly posted double-digit tackles in 11 games that season.
In addition, he made 12 tackles for loss, and 3 INTs (returning one for a TD).
For his outstanding college career, Kuechly totaled 532 total tackles, which ranks 2nd all-time in the NCAA, and is also a school and ACC record.
Awards and Accolades in 2011 included:
- Consensus All-American
- All-ACC 1st Team
- ACC Defensive Player of the Year
- Bronco Nagurski Award
- Butkus Award
- Lott Trophy
- Lombardi Award
As a result of his stellar junior season, Kuechly later declared for the 2012 NFL Draft.
Kuechly Had a Short but Distinguished NFL Career
Kuechly was drafted in the 1st Round (9th overall) by the Carolina Panthers in the 2012 NFL Draft.
He made an immediate impact at the pro level. For example, Kuechly was named:
- NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year 2012
- Defensive Player of the Year 2013
- 7 Pro Bowl Selection
- 5 All-Pro Selections
However, that immediate impact came at a cost. Kuechly suffered three concussions during his playing days in Carolina.
As a result, he retired from pro football at the age of 28.
For his pro career, Kuechly made 1,092 tackles, 75 tackles for loss, 12.5 sacks, 18 INTs, and 9 fumble recoveries.
Kuechly will be inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in December.
Thanks for reading.
Originally published at https://thegridironnews.com on January 15, 2023.