The past several years have seen consequential changes for NCAA schools and their athletes: the introduction of name, image, and likeness rules; the establishment of the transfer portal; and the realignment of the conferences in which all major college teams and athletes compete—and critically, the distribution of the TV monies the conferences generate. To guide us through this sea change, we drafted two of the most knowledgeable people in sports: former US secretary of state, current director of the Hoover Institution, co-owner of the Denver Broncos, and most recently, special advisor on athletics to the president of Stanford University (more on what that means in the show) Condoleezza Rice; and former Stanford and Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck (also the number-one pick in the 2012 NFL draft). Together, Rice and Luck explain the new terrain of college athletics, how it affects every sport played in the academic realm, what it means for both the Olympics and pro sports, and most importantly, how it will change the lives of college athletes.
To view the full transcript of this episode, read below:
Peter Robinson: The amateur athlete, the student who played for the love of the game. That was the old ideal. Here's a glimpse of the new reality: At the University of Utah, a couple of organizations have just offered each scholarship member of the football team a new pickup truck. On the future of college sports, Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, and former quarterback of the Colts and quarterback of the Stanford University football team where he played right here, Andrew Luck, on "Uncommon Knowledge," now. Welcome to "Uncommon Knowledge." I'm Peter Robinson. There are two Condoleezza Rices. One is a scholar' scholar and a diplomat's diplomat, the other, an athlete and sports fan who was a competitive figure skater as a girl and is now a member of the ownership group of the Denver Broncos. This past year, the second Condoleezza Rice, now director of the Hoover Institution, served as special advisor on athletics to the president of Stanford. We'll be coming back to that. Just as there are two Condi Rices, There are two Andrew Lucks, one is of course Andrew Luck, the star quarterback. He broke record after record here at Stanford. Then in 2012, he went to the Indianapolis Colts as the top draft pick in the entire NFL. I find that more impressive than a Nobel Prize. So I'm gonna say it again: This man in 2012 was the top draft pick in the entire NFL.
- With the first pick in the 2012 NFL draft, The Indianapolis Colts select: Andrew Luck, quarterback Stanford.
Peter Robinson: He remained with the Colts for seven years. The other Andrew Luck, the brainiac. As an undergrad here at Stanford, Mr. Luck majored in architectural design. Now he has returned to Stanford to earn a graduate degree in education. Condi, Andrew, thank you for joining us. Well, actually, this is in a way your home, so thanks for inviting us in.
Condoleezza Rice: Great to be with you, Peter.
Andrew Luck: Absolutely makes me feel comfortable in a place like this.
Peter Robinson: Condoleezza Rice in 2018, quote, "The collegiate model," that is the old model of the student athlete, "The collegiate model is worth defending. The athlete is engaging in an activity that is going to give a lifetime of value in the form of a college degree." Close quote. The college degree should be enough. We're going to come to all the changes that have taken place since you said that in 2012. But for now, do you wanna stand on that, that the old model is still in some basic way, worth defending?
Condoleezza Rice: Well, Peter, it depends on what you mean by the old model. I think the essence of the so-called old model, that the value proposition is that you get to play your sport at the highest levels. You get the very best training, the very best coaching, the best opportunity to showcase your talents. And by the way, if you do the right thing, you get a college degree. And we know that a college degree is worth $1 million over your lifetime in earnings. So that's the value proposition. I'll just say one other thing. I did a commission for the NCAA, on men's basketball and 59% of D1 players think they're going to the NBA. The right number is 1.5%. You need a plan B. It's called a college degree.
Peter Robinson: Alright. Andrew?
Andrew Luck: Hm mm?
Peter Robinson: You played here at Stanford as a student athlete under the old rules, but you packed these stands, you took this university to the Orange Bowl and the Fiesta Bowl, and it is safe to say that you contributed to millions in television revenues. Should you have been paid?
Andrew Luck: That's a great question and I think that's a question that a lot of folks are trying to answer right now. And on the heels of what Dr. Rice just said, I think there are so many aspects of the old amateur college athletics model that ring true and speak to the values that I certainly feel and maybe how I grew up and the importance of getting an education and realizing, you know, I had the privilege of growing up in home where my father was a professional quarterback.
Peter Robinson: Right?
Andrew Luck: But that ended way before I was born. And he had a five year career. So I think I knew that professional sports, if I was good enough to make it and if the stars aligned, was gonna be a brief, you know, brief intense existence in my broader life.
Peter Robinson: Okay.
Andrew Luck: Should I have been paid? You know, I think it would've been nice. Why not?
Peter Robinson: Fair answer.
Peter Robinson: We can work with that. Hold that thought. Alright. So let me go into the revolution in college sports in recent years. This'll take a moment or two to set up, but let's just get, establish the background here. It comes down to one word: money. D1 athletics generated 15.8 billion in revenues in 2019, which is the last year before the pandemic. And it's not just staggering sums of money, it's the concentration of that money. One sport, football, accounted for as best I can tell, a little more than half of that vast income. And even among football teams, if you look at the football bowl subdivision, the FBS, which are the most, the biggest revenue teams, of the 130 teams in the FBS, only 25 showed a net income, so to speak. The other 105 teams lost money, gigantic sums of money, tightly concentrated. Men's basketball brings in money too, but not nearly as much as football.
Condoleezza Rice: Yeah, not nearly.
Peter Robinson: What's that?
Condoleezza Rice: I said not nearly as much.
Peter Robinson: Not nearly as much.
Condoleezza Rice: Yeah. Not nearly as much.
Peter Robinson: Okay. So we've got the money.
Condoleezza Rice: Well, just a second though, Peter.
Peter Robinson: Okay?
Condoleezza Rice: I'm going to interrupt you. Why do you think only a very few football teams generate so-called profit? Why do you think that is? It's because if you are an university like Stanford, we play 36 sports. 36. That includes women's volleyball, it includes men's golf, it includes soccer for both men and women, et cetera, et cetera. 36 sports. Now, the only sport that actually makes money is football. So where do you think that football income is going to, it's going to cover 35 sports so that we can play a broad number of sports so that we can play women's Title IX sports. And so when you say football is generating all of this money, if I simply say, all right, therefore those people like Andrew who played it extremely well should be compensated for that somehow. What am I gonna do about all the other sports that we want to play-
Peter Robinson: Okay?
Condoleezza Rice: Including by the way that Stanford plays a significant number of so-called Olympic sports. We would've been the seventh or eighth country in the world in terms of medals in several Olympics. Do you really wanna sacrifice that? Because you can only generate money in-
Peter Robinson: I can tell you what I don't wanna do, I don't wanna cross you in this conversation, but so I do hear what she just said though, is that from the ages of 18 to 22, when you're playing on this field-
Andrew Luck: Yeah?
Peter Robinson: You were already a philanthropist. You were subsidizing 35 sports.
Condoleezza Rice: Watch it, Andrew. Weren't you married to a gymnast?
Andrew Luck: I am!
Peter Robinson: Including your wife's sport. You're married to a gymnast. Okay, so can we, let's take so: huge money. The NCAA has responded. There have been court decisions. There's a case that went all the way to the Supreme Court, the NCAA lost, and we've got two absolutely basic changes to the way particularly football is played. And one of these is the transfer portal.
Andrew Luck: Mm.
Peter Robinson: 2018, the transfer, the NCAA institutes the transfer portal, which makes it much easier for an athlete to transfer from one team to another. And by 2021, there were over 10,000 sports transfers last year, the USC football team, long may they be cursed. I just...
Andrew Luck: It's okay with me.
Peter Robinson: Okay! Last year-
Condoleezza Rice: You never lost to them, did you?
Andrew Luck: No.
Condoleezza Rice: Alright, there we go.
Peter Robinson: He considered the succession. Last year the USC football team took 26 players through the portal. And this year Coach Sanders over in Colorado took 49 players. Is this a good thing or a bad thing, Andrew?
Andrew Luck: Yeah, I'll give it a crack.
Peter Robinson: Take a shot at that.
Andrew Luck: And you know, I think there is a lot of good in it and I think-
Peter Robinson: Oh, you do?
Andrew Luck: I do. I think protection for players is a good thing, at the end of the day. I remember, you know, I was a union member in the NFL. I believe in player safety, health safety, I believe in the privilege of choice and getting in better situations. And so, you know, I think the opening up to a certain degree, flexibility and choice for players in sports in college can be a good thing. I think if rubber meets the road and educational attainment becomes a sacrifice, if exploitation in some way is part of the game, I think those are sort of the scary things we need to think about and maybe aren't doing a great job right now in this ecosystem, of making sure that, you know, certainly the educational attainment piece is being honored. But I wanna believe that there's a way in which the system can work that athletes and not just football, this is for a bunch of sports, can move when and and transfer between schools without draconian punitive consequences, yet still hold on to, you know, some educational value.
Condoleezza Rice: I think that the ideal that Andrew just articulated would be great, but I don't think that's the way the transfer portal is working.
Andrew Luck: Mm.
Condoleezza Rice: The way the transfer portal is working, right, is-
Peter Robinson: You take her on. You take her on-
Condoleezza Rice: is working right now-
Peter Robinson: Get angry with him now.
Condoleezza Rice: he way it's working right now, of course it's choice for players but it's basically coaches are going out and recruiting entire squads.
Andrew Luck: Hmm.
Peter Robinson: Yeah!
Condoleezza Rice: I was watching football on Saturday, surprise surprise. And there was a team that shall remain nameless, that was in the top five, 67% of their starters are transfers.
Andrew Luck: Hmm.
Condoleezza Rice: Now what does that say for all the kids who went to this university, expected to be able to play, did their best, but they weren't quite good enough. And so they were told: leave, go someplace else. That's how the transfer portal is working. That's what's happening. And that isn't really a choice for the players. It might be a choice for the very elite, but you know, that kid who was a walk-on and got dumped by the coach 'cause he wasn't quite good enough. And you mentioned I'm an NFL owner, somebody said well it's like the NFL, no, I'm sorry. The NFL has rules: During free agency there's a period in which you can be a free agent. We have unrestricted free agents, restricted free agents. Teams understand the rules. There are essentially no rules now for, not right now in the transfer portal.
Peter Robinson: So I - go ahead.
Condoleezza Rice: I just wanna mention one other thing about the transfer portal. You mentioned the educational attainment piece. If I told you that Joe Smith doesn't play a sport at all, but Joe Smith has gone to three different colleges in three years-
Peter Robinson: I'd say there's a problem with Joe Smith...
Condoleezza Rice: sould you expect that Joe Smith is actually getting an education doing that? That's true-
Andrew Luck: I doubt that.
Condoleezza Rice: For a particular men's basketball team that ended up in the final four last year. So if the transfer portal were truly just a matter about a player getting to make a choice 'cause things didn't quite work out here, that would be one thing. But that's not what the transfer portal is, right now.
Peter Robinson: Could I ask, all my questions are gonna be the questions of somebody who sits up there, not somebody who played down here.
Andrew Luck: We both sit up there, by the way.
Peter Robinson: So one question I have is if you, I don't want to attack, actually my impulse is to attack Colorado, but we beat them, so Stanford beat them a couple weeks ago, so I don't need to pile on. But if you've got essentially half your squad and most of your starters weren't part of the school last year and might get poached away, what does that do to the fan? What does it do to the sense that these young men on the field in some way are part of the institution, they're representing the institution because they're genuine students there? Question one of two. Question two of two. If you're on the coaching staff and you're bringing along a freshman, how do you, what if this kid is really good, he's gonna get noticed by somebody else. I mean, I just don't understand how you coach the way the game- how any sense of connection, real connection and commitment between the institution and the players on the field can be sustained if it becomes this frankly, purely mercenary, kid who goes where he wants to go for his career. Well, how do you answer that?
Andrew Luck: Yeah you know, I think I was curious about this question as well. I know part of what in the sort of nostalgic being back on Stanford's campus and thinking about those connections, at least I felt and going to class living in dormitories and I think it in many ways added up to a real sense of community that I'm forever grateful for and get to live in, in a sense, again, so I was curious. So I went and traveled with the Stanford team to Colorado, to Boulder this year to watch the game. And as a fan of Stanford and you know, closely tied to it, it was thrilled obviously that we won in that dramatic fashion.
- Oh, what a down!
- Oh my God.
- What a highlight.
Andrew Luck: And I'll say this about, to throw a wrench into a little bit, the stands were packed. Buffalo fans were happy, they enjoyed their team and they weren't happy at the end of the game obviously. But it was an atmosphere that hasn't existed in Boulder for a long time. And I think there's a lot, this is where I'm struggling to find clear answers perhaps on what is good, what is bad in college football.
Peter Robinson: So Coach Sanders brought those kids in through the transfer portal, but he electrified the whole institution.
Andrew Luck: Yeah, and so I think it, to discredit any good things that happen would be too simplistic of a deal.
Condoleezza Rice: And let me tell you, so Deion Sanders was one of my first favorite players of all time. Alright? His closing speed as a defensive back. Unbelievable. He is not playing against the rules, because there are no rules. And so I'm not going to slam Deion Sanders for taking advantage of the circumstances.
Peter Robinson: Right.
Condoleezza Rice: And it's true. You know, I grew up in Denver and so I have a lot of friends who were Colorado students, Colorado fans. It's been a long time since they had that kind of energy, but it's going to be very interesting. They've now lost several games in a row if it doesn't quite pan out and now there are another new 50 that come in because maybe I can get better players. So now people start poaching my players. I don't think this is sustainable. That's what I'm really saying.
Andrew Luck: Yeah.
Condoleezza Rice: I don't - even if you want to make arguments that there are some aspects of it that we might wish to say have some benefit to the players. I don't think it's sustainable. And I do think it causes an athlete to do something that, I would have quit skating a long time after, shortly after I started, had it been about winning every competition, because I didn't win any. I wasn't very good, but I kept waking up every morning and practicing and working and trying to get better. And when I did have a little success, it was wonderful. And I wonder about all those kids who are now just being shoved aside 'cause they weren't quite good enough, But given a chance they might've gotten better. Isn't that supposed to be a part of a college experience as well?
Andrew Luck: Yeah, I'd like to add, I think, I wonder what it's like, and I'm just putting, going back to the freshman, Andrew who's a quarterback who for the first time in his life is not starting on a team and is not the best player on the team and deserves to be on the bench. 'Cause he is not very good, and I know that there are 30 to 40, 50 young, young men, boys, and college teams that are sitting on the bench that aren't ready to play. And can you trust that if you work hard enough over the next couple of years, you'll get a chance or will someone else come in and take your spot? And, that part I think also, so we're still young in this era, if you will.
Condoleezza Rice: And I hope people will take that, 'cause Andrew's also coaching at Palo Alto High and a kid that you'll see at Pally who's maybe not that great, but he's gonna get a chance to go to college and he's gonna get a chance to play football. You know, you hope that he gets a chance to get better, 'cause a lot happens to a kid between 18 and 20.
Andrew Luck: Absolutely.
Peter Robinson: The other of these two absolutely basic changes. You know, the initials, NIL: Name, Image and Likeness. So again, let me take a moment to set this up. The Supreme Court rules against the NCAA, arguing that it couldn't prevent schools from offering athletes certain education-related benefits. The NCAA responds by adopting new rules, I'm quoting from the NCAA website. College athletes now have the opportunity to benefit from their name, image, and likeness. That rule is adopted in 2021, less than two years ago. By this year, this is how fast this has moved: boosters at the University of Utah, as I mentioned at the top of the show, were given a new pickup truck to each scholarship member of the football team. And a lot of players are openly promoting products. Here is an example, Colorado quarterback, Shedeur Sanders, quote, this is a tweet I'm quoting word for word from the tweet: "It's tailgate season, and I partnered with @PLBSports to create my own legendary brand of barbecue sauce." Close quote. So Andrew, justice for players at last or the death of any sense of love of game and dignity?
Andrew Luck: Are there only two sides, two choices?
Peter Robinson: Those are your two choices. She gets the subtlety.
Andrew Luck: Right?
Condoleezza Rice: Right. I get to do the subtle things.
Andrew Luck: Right. I've said this before and I think about it. In full disclosure, I am part of a collective here at Stanford and have done NIL deals with current students. My wife and I have done NIL deals with current student athletes. And we think it's great. And I think it's, you know, and where else do you stop someone from using the opportunity to capitalize and in the market on their name, image, and likeness? So I think that-
Peter Robinson: Why are you nodding?
Condoleezza Rice: Because on this one I agree
Peter Robinson: You do?
Condoleezza Rice: Yes. On name, image and likeness. I don't like the way it's being used. I don't think every student athlete ought to be given this.
Condoleezza Rice: But I will tell you that before this ruling, the only students who couldn't generate income based on their name, image, and likeness were athletes. So if you were a musician and you made a highly successful video and it went viral, you could absolutely benefit from that and monetize that. If you were a college music major or a college artist, you could benefit. So I have no problem with a student athlete being able to benefit from their name, image and likeness. And in fact, I think the idea that Shedeur Sanders wants to sell barbecue sauce, just fine with me. I don't even mind if somebody wants to promote a product. And I will tell you a very interesting thing: at Stanford, at least the women athletes have done better than the men. So it is in part the profile of some of our women golfers, some of our women basketball players that they've done better than a lot of our male athletes. So the fear that it was gonna be a Title IX problem, maybe, maybe not. Now, the piece that I do always say to student athletes though, is, be careful what you use your name, image, and likeness for, because your name, image, and likeness is for a lifetime. So if you, you're not probably gonna be embarrassed because you sold barbecue sauce, but there could be things that you use your name, image, and likeness for, that when you're 35, you're gonna be sorry that you did. And so I think we do owe our student athletes advising and some counsel about how to use this opportunity.
Peter Robinson: Okay. So can I... One more of a question. You're the one who raised this question of sustainability and as you said, this is all very new. So I guess we're all groping toward protocols and rules and so forth. You served as provost of this university. I cannot escape the thought that if there comes a day and there may, when some new version of Andrew Luck has deals that enable him to earn two or three times as much as a full professor of classics or a full professor of history, that puts a torque on the whole ethos of this university. That would be a problem.
Condoleezza Rice: Have you looked at what some of our students have earned for the app that they developed?
Peter Robinson: Okay. Okay.
Condoleezza Rice: No, I, Peter, I don't-
Peter Robinson: If you tell me not to worry, I will stop worrying.
Condoleezza Rice: I am worried and you know that I'm concerned. I think there are ways that name, image and likeness, if the NCAA had gotten on top of it and that same basketball commission in 2017, we said to the FCAA, "Get rules now," they decided to wait for the court decision and then they lost control of it. So again, as a matter, NIL might be okay, name, image and likeness. If Sanders wants to sell barbecue sauce, or if, I saw the kid Caleb Williams, you know, he's doing some commercials for Nissan. Alright, it's okay. But the way that it's evolving has to do now, okay, I'll give you a bigger NIL deal if you'll transfer to so-and-so university, alright? And the numbers are getting really crazy in that context. So we didn't get ahead of some of this. And then with the court decisions, we're running to catch up. But I will say if universities can stay true to their values and can say, you know, I don't mind what you are doing, and for most kids, by the way, name, image and likeness is I'll show your bike on my Instagram and can I get a free bike? That's what most of the NIL deals are like. So it's another one of those circumstances that probably you weren't gonna stay at a place where the only people who could use name, image, and likeness were athletes in a university, that wasn't gonna hold. But now it's the combination of these things, transfer portal and NIL and big deals. That's what's really-
Peter Robinson: You don't see any danger that boosters would get together and say, "Okay, we're in, we're gonna cut an NIL deal with the whole team. We want a team photo. And that means every man on this football team or every woman on the volleyball team gets, you name the amount of money, that we need to offer to recruit the kids we wanna recruit."
Andrew Luck: That's the way-
Condoleezza Rice: Why did you go with, to recruit? That's the, yes...
Andrew Luck: Well, I think there's some of the guardrails that Dr. Rice is also, or the lack of guardrails around that, that Pay for Play in essence sorta is existing in college right now. And I think it's murky about what it looks like. But collectives can pay and you're not-
Peter Robinson: And your view is we should learn to live with it or you agree, is there a-
Andrew Luck: I think because of the transfer rules and NIL rules and some other things and a lack of guardrails and a lack perhaps of an oversight body like the NCAA stepping in and saying, "Hey, this is okay, this is not okay," that we're living in a bit of the Wild West. And then conference realignment has happened.
Condoleezza Rice: That's right. That's the other big-
Andrew Luck: So we'll get to that-
Peter Robinson: Coming to you on that-
Andrew Luck: which I think also has laid bare the power of television and television money and football as you know, its place in our consumer society. So I think, yeah, it's the Wild West still, I think, and I'm not sure where we are.
Peter Robinson: On this next segment. I'm going to be speaking to Condi in her capacity as Special Advisor for Athletics to the President of Stanford University. And I would like you to feel free to help me question her because I wanna know what just happened. In June of last year, USC and UCLA announced that they're leaving the Pac-12 for the Big Ten, where they would reportedly increase their television revenues from 20-something to nearly a hundred million dollars each. They go for the big money. The PAC-12 is now the Pac-10. In early August of this past summer, I'm piecing this together from various press accounts and I'm waiting for you if I get this wrong, you know the inside story so far, right? Okay.
Condoleezza Rice: So far, you're right.
Andrew Luck: We've got a long way to go.
Condoleezza Rice: Yeah.
Peter Robinson: Early August, the presidents of the remaining 10 institutions were to meet, to sign a media deal with Apple. The "Los Angeles Times," quote: "10 minutes before the meeting was to begin, Washington informed the league that it was leaving for the Big 10. Once the Huskies left, the Ducks followed. The Arizona, Arizona State, and Utah exodus to the Big 12 flowed naturally from there." Close quote. In a single weekend, the venerable PAC-12, which had its origins all the way back in the 1950s, was reduced to just four teams. This is a diplomatic problem that requires a former Secretary of State to address. Condi Rice becomes special advisor to the president of this university for athletics. And by September she has brokered a deal under which Stanford University, located as the seagull flies about 11 miles from the Pacific, Stanford University, will now, at beginning next year, participate in the Atlantic Coast Conference. How did you do that?
Condoleezza Rice: Well, I didn't do it alone. Let me just be very clear about that.
Peter Robinson: Okay?
Condoleezza Rice: But when the music stopped in August after the Arizonas and Utah had gone to the Big 12 along with Colorado-
Peter Robinson: That one weekend was a total surprise.
Condoleezza Rice: That one weekend was the complete wreck-
Peter Robinson: It just fell apart.
Condoleezza Rice: it just fell apart.
Peter Robinson: Alright.
Condoleezza Rice: And look, it's still intact. All right? The Pac-12 is still intact, and we-
Peter Robinson: This year...
Condoleezza Rice: And I just wanna be very clear, we technically have not left the Pac-12.
Peter Robinson: Mm, right, right.
Condoleezza Rice: We will make that notification. But we didn't have a chair to sit on once the music stopped and our athletes were the most vocal about wanting to be able to play sports at the level, at the elite level that they came here to play at the level that they expected to play, that we actually owed them, having them come here-
Peter Robinson: Right?
Condoleezza Rice: To be able to play at that level. And that really means a Power 5 Conference. It means one of the five that you, big 10, big 12, ACC, SEC or Pac-12. With the Pac-12 teetering, the ACC became our best choice. I don't think I'm revealing any secrets. The Big 10 was a bit in exhaustion from expansion. They'd just taken in four teams. And so that wasn't going to happen. We decided that the ACC was our best option and that we fit culturally in the ACC with a lot of private universities and public universities of our same academic peerage, so Duke and Wake Forest and Virginia and North Carolina and Notre Dame. And so it was a good decision, but I think it's gonna be, we have a lot of adjustments to make. Now, one piece of good news is that SMU also came in with Cal and with Stanford and we did lock arms with and stay with Cal.
Peter Robinson: Hm mm?
Condoleezza Rice: And the fact that SMU is in Dallas may give us opportunities to do some play between the two coasts in Dallas, which would be helpful.
Peter Robinson: May I ask you, first of all, on behalf of all Stanford fans, thank you. Because if it had remained the PAC Four, you've just got a situation which is just plain untenable.
Condoleezza Rice: It's untenable.
Peter Robinson: It just can't work. So you ended up with something workable. Did you end up with, in your own mind, the best that we could do for now? Or when this all finally came together at the very end of August and in September, did you say, "This is a wonderful new opportunity, this can improve the level of play, give new opportunities to fans and athletes alike." Did you really think, actually this has worked out more than fine.
Condoleezza Rice: I did think it worked out fine. I would've preferred the Pac-12 to stay in check, all right. It's actually 108 or 103 year old conference, so it's-
Peter Robinson: Oh, is it?
Condoleezza Rice: Yeah. Well, PAC four, from the PAC four, right?
Peter Robinson: Oh, okay. Okay.
Condoleezza Rice: So it would've been great. But given that that wasn't an option, the ACC option seems like a very good one to me. And in fact, when I think about Clemson coming in here, or Florida State coming in here, we know what happens when Notre Dame comes in here. There's great excitement,
Peter Robinson: Their fans outnumber others oftentimes.
Condoleezza Rice: That's a different problem, we can work on that. Andrew's working on that.
Peter Robinson: Yes, yes.
Condoleezza Rice: But the other piece of it is, again, for the other sports other than football, to be in a conference where they will play, our student athletes will play their peers, kids that they've met along the way in junior golf for on the circuit. That's, that's really important.
Peter Robinson: You're now a junior in high school-
Andrew Luck: Hm mm?
Peter Robinson: and you're thinking about Stanford, but you realize you're gonna have to spend a lot of time on airplanes flying across the continent of North America to play games. Would you still have come to Stanford?
Andrew Luck: Absolutely.
Peter Robinson: You would have?
Andrew Luck: Yeah, and you live this in the NFL a little more than I lived it, in the Pac-12 while I was here. A charter flight with good food ain't the worst thing in the world. It's a treat. And this is football, which-
Peter Robinson: Volleyball, field hockey, they won't have charters.
Andrew Luck: This I'm curious certainly as a-
Peter Robinson: Feel free, ask a question-
Peter Robinson: I'm exhausted, you take her on.
Andrew Luck: How we foresee it, and where some of the opportunities, like is, because I am in lockstep with you. The ACC provides competition, I think for a lot of sports that is really, really incredible and amazing.
Condoleezza Rice: Yes, yes.
Andrew Luck: And a lot of peer institutions that I think approach athletics and scholarship in the same way. And the challenges do exist.
Condoleezza Rice: Yes, they do.
Andrew Luck: They do, for a lot of Olympic sports on the road, which we, we hang our hat on.
Condoleezza Rice: That's right. No, those challenges exist, not for every Olympic sport. A lot of the sports actually travel a lot already. So golf, tennis, one that had to travel, field hockey, we don't play field hockey on the West Coast. And so they were traveling east all the time anyway, we believe it's about 22 of the 36 sports. It won't matter a great deal at all.
Peter Robinson: Because they already-
Condoleezza Rice: Because they're already traveling a lot. Elite athl-
Peter Robinson: Swimming, gymnastics?
Condoleezza Rice: The ones that really, to us appear to be most affected. Soccer, baseball-
Andrew Luck: Softball.
Condoleezza Rice: Softball, maybe volleyball. And we are working really closely with the ACC that wants to see this work for their athletes and for ours, it's why some Dallas tournaments may be a smart way to do this, but it's, you know, you don't always get your opportunities in a nice, neat package. And this-
Peter Robinson: You don't always get what you ask for, that's that philosopher Mick Jagger once said-
Condoleezza Rice: Yeah, once said. But I think we can work it out for our students. We'll do everything we can. And the main thing is to make sure that academically they can continue to perform. I will say, this is just a little funny. It actually takes longer to get to Pullman, Washington commercially than it does to get to Atlanta. So that's just, just a little point.
Peter Robinson: Okay! Alright.
Andrew Luck: I would like to go back to your earlier question when it comes to Stanford, I think part of what Stanford student athletes are looking for is the highest level of competition and whatever they're doing. And Dr. Rice alluded to that and sort of what student athletes talked about when the conference shakeup was going on. And I think as a high school athlete coming out, you're looking at what the elite level is and I think it would've been a really, really tough pill to swallow had Stanford not been sitting at the elite level of athletic competition and football, basketball and all down the line. So, yeah.
Peter Robinson: Okay, we're talking about sports in general, college sports in general, but we keep coming back to football. So could I, it seems unlikely that I'll ever have the two of you at a table again. So may I just ask about that game? Give, let me give you two quotations. Here's NBC announcer Bob Costas. He's speaking in 2017 after a study that examined 111 NFL players, found brain injuries in 110. This was a bad year for the NFL. Bob Costas, quote: "The existential question is the nature of football itself. If I had an athletically gifted 12 or 13 year old son, I wouldn't let him play." Close quote. Here's the second quotation, Andrew Luck, on August 24th, 2019 when you announced your retirement from the Colts. Quote, I'm quoting you: "For the last four years or so, I've been in this cycle of injury, pain, rehab, injury, pain, rehab. It's been unceasing and unrelenting both in season and off-season. The only way I see out is to no longer play football." close quote. At the current levels of weight and speed and violence, is this great game sustainable?
Andrew Luck: I hope so. And I think so. And I don't have the empirical data to share with you about injuries or maybe we get some of your poli-sci fellows to-
Condoleezza Rice: Yes. Right, right.
Andrew Luck: Run run the numbers-
Condoleezza Rice: A regression...
Andrew Luck: But I'm coaching high school football right now.
Peter Robinson: I know! And you love this game.
Andrew Luck: I do!
Peter Robinson: I wanna know why.
Andrew Luck: I do, in part.
Peter Robinson: It hurts.
Andrew Luck: Part of, I do love this game and it's been very good to me. And it's given me a life in many ways that I could never have imagined. It's incredible. And I think part of the responsibility, now being out of the game, is to try and come back and help the game evolve and continue to grow into a safer, I think you've seen rule changes that are safer. I think tackling needs to continue to progress to be a safer action in the sport. I think we need to use technology to help make the game safer. I think this game is too important to America for it to go anywhere.
Peter Robinson: Why is it important to the country?
Andrew Luck: Because Saturdays people get together all over this place and watch it, and on Sundays they get together and watch their teams and they, and it, yeah, I might be outta my lane here, but it seems like one of the things that does bind us together across differences,
Condoleezza Rice: It does, and I will say this, there aren't too many things.
Peter Robinson: We have less and less-
Condoleezza Rice: There are not too many things where you will go to a game and you'll have the CEO and the shop steward in the same stuff. Their 49ers stuff or their Colt stuff.
Peter Robinson: And a Republican, and a Democrat-
Condoleezza Rice: And all they care about at that moment is how their team plays. But let me just say something about this safety. Look, we are working really hard, the NFL's worked very hard on safety. NCAAs worked very hard, hard on safety. There are panels with neurologists, the leading neuroscientist about what can we do. But let me just say one thing, Peter. I think we can absolutely try to make the game safer and safer and safer, to a certain extent, sports isn't so safe, right? This is not the only sport in which you get concussions. I had two as a figure skater. 'cause if you bang your head on the ice, you're likely to get a concussion, right? I have in my back pinched vertebrae from figure skating, right? So the fact is athletics is not natural to the body. But with better training, with better rules, I think we can diminish some of the impacts.
Peter Robinson: Technology is the way out here.
Condoleezza Rice: No, not just technology, study. Study by, I think for the first time we really have over the last several years had neurologists and people who understand the brain and what's happening in this. And if you watch now, if somebody even looks like a hint of a concussion in the NFL or in NCAA, they're off the field just like this. There was a golfing friend of mine, a professional golfer who's a friend of mine who got hit with a golf ball. And the PGA wasn't as quick to get into a protocol because they hadn't thought about it. So a lot of this will, I hope, evolve into better and better rules.
Peter Robinson: So why do you love the game? I wanna know you before we, these cameras, started rolling.
Condoleezza Rice: Yes?
Peter Robinson: You talked about you own a piece of the Broncos so I can understand that yesterday was a good day for you.
Condoleezza Rice: It was a really good day.
Peter Robinson: But you said you also watched some college. You spent the whole weekend watching football.
Condoleezza Rice: I did watch the whole, I did.
Peter Robinson: Why?
Condoleezza Rice: Because my dad was a football coach when I was born and I was supposed to be his all American linebacker. And I'm an only child, girl. And so my happiest moments in my entire life, watching football with my dad. It was music with my mom who never picked up a baseball bat or a ball, a bat of any kind. And my dad with him, it was sports and Andrew knows this. My dad wanted me to know the Xs and Os. So yeah, I'm seven years old. "Condoleezza, what is that?" "Daddy, that's a trap block." You know, I just love the sport. But I think what I love about it is it's actually a very strategic game. It's a chess match. You're moving the pieces around and it's a sport that really requires the ultimate in concentration, in physicality, all in one package. I just can't help it. But I do love it.
Peter Robinson: So we have here an athlete who's also a brainiac and a former Secretary of State saying, "This game enhances life."
Condoleezza Rice: It does.
Peter Robinson: Is that right?
Condoleezza Rice: It does.
Peter Robinson: You're going to insist on that.
Condoleezza Rice: It's not as much-
Peter Robinson: As much pain as-
Condoleezza Rice: And it's also, it's not- and it's not for everybody or it's not for everybody. And I will say one thing about Andrew's leaving early, I think that was a good signal to people in football that you don't have to play the 15, 17 year career in order to be fulfilled. And that if you've gotten what you need from the game and you've given as much as he did to the game and it's now time to quit, that's okay too.
Peter Robinson: Okay.
Andrew Luck: I watched- I thank you for saying that, Dr. Rice. I appreciated it and I also, you know, I watched games this past week and I saw Brock Purdy self-reported a concussion after a flight home. Which when I was playing, which was not that long ago, would not have happened. And I knew before I was playing that that wouldn't have happened. So I do think there has been a culture shift and how players-
Condoleezza Rice: Yea, yes-
Andrew Luck: are sharing their vulnerabilities about health and taking their health seriously, which is a, which is a which seeing, or at least reading the news and watching a star quarterback in this league, self-report a concussion after, you know-
Peter Robinson: That's new.
Andrew Luck: after a game is a really positive step in a direction that made me think, oh gosh, you know, we're on a path. And I think it's in a positive direction.
Peter Robinson: Okay, so let's, as I think about it, and I don't think about it as much as the two of you or at the depth that the two of you think about it. So this is, I'll just trot out a couple of ideas here. If we think about what college sports should look like and we've already agreed that we're groping toward protocols and rules, I think there are a couple of basic choices to make here. One model, Condi and I have talked about this before. Just watch her face when I say this: One model is the Ivy League model. Look, oh, that, oh, don't say anything. Hold on.
Condoleezza Rice: I'm not, because I don't wanna criticize the Ivy League.
Peter Robinson: Okay, so here's the point. I'll address this one to you then.
Andrew Luck: Yeah?
Peter Robinson: When the Ivy League was formed back in 1954, the league explicitly made a trade-off between sports and academics. And it said we are not going to sacrifice our academics. So we're gonna live with a more modest sports program.
Condoleezza Rice: Like those incredible hockey teams like Cornell?
Peter Robinson: You see- she just can't stop. I really, so perhaps the Ivy League doesn't quite live up to its own ideal, but the ideal here is, relax everybody, that we don't need a Power 5. There are 5,000 colleges and universities in this country and we don't have to have the games dominated by the top 25. Let's just have, go back to the really old fashioned ideal of genuine student athletes. Nobody gets paid. All the kids are there to take exams and graduate after four years. What do you think of that?
Andrew Luck: I think there's a place for it and I think it exists, but I don't think that model is a general thing, is what we wanted-
Condoleezza Rice: Let me embarrass, let me embarrass Andrew Luck.
Peter Robinson: Alright, go ahead.
Condoleezza Rice: Were you valedictorian of your class in high school?
Andrew Luck: Yeah, I was.
Condoleezza Rice: All right. Where is Andrew Luck gonna go? Valedictorian of his class at one of the best high schools in-
Andrew Luck: Co-valedictorian…
Condoleezza Rice: Co-valedictorian
Peter Robinson: Oh, so humble. Have you noticed?
Condoleezza Rice: That of one of the best classes, best schools in Texas and elite athlete. So why can't there be a place where the valedictorian of the class and the elite athlete in one body gets to play? And that place has been Stanford. The thing that we've done very well here is we've believed in several excellences at Stanford. We've believed in excellence of research, we've believed in excellence of teaching, we've believed in excellence of clinical care and we've believed in excellence of athletics with the highest academic standards. And so there need to be places like that for the Andrew Lucks and the-
Peter Robinson: And are there enough to make up a whole conference?
Condoleezza Rice: I think there are others. There are others, but maybe not quite to the extent that we demand both. But there are other places that uphold academics and athletics as well.
Andrew Luck: Absolutely.
Peter Robinson: So, I'm sorry, this is a slightly- this is the tendentious question I'm gonna permit myself. You tied yourself into the shape of a pretzel for the entire month of August to pull off a deal with the ACC.
Condoleezza Rice: Right.
Peter Robinson: Because the Pac-12 fell apart over television deals. We sit on a football field at a university with an endowment of almost $40 billion. One of the three biggest endowments in the country. Harvard and Yale-
Condoleezza Rice: Princeton.
Peter Robinson: Princeton. One of the four. Alright. Why does money matter to Stanford?
Condoleezza Rice: Well, as you know, Peter, there are a lot of things that Stanford's-
Peter Robinson: Look at that, that's really vicious. And you know better than to ask that question.
Condoleezza Rice: You, know, there's a lot of stuff that Stanford's covering with that $40 billion endowment and the payout from it, which is by the way, not $40 billion, but let's remember that what we're trying to do here at Stanford is to have the strongest, best athletic program within our academic context. And that means that we don't want football and college and athletics at Stanford to take away from what we are able to do on the research and teaching side. And so to the degree that football can get that contract and can help to fund the other sports, we wanna do that. The university from time to time does have to step up to help. And it does. But I just wanna make one point about the television contracts. You mentioned the possible deal with Apple, which was gonna be a streaming deal.
Peter Robinson: Right?
Condoleezza Rice: The one thing none of us know is how long we're gonna be in a world in which cable television contracts look like they do today. I don't know anybody under the age of 40, maybe even 50 who really has cable anymore. People stream. And so eventually there will be some changes in the way that sports are compensated by the outside media world out there. And we'll have to be agile to deal with that as well.
Peter Robinson: Alright, so five years from now, what change, I'm now gonna make you, I was gonna say NCAA commissioner, whatever the high at the NCAA is called? I don't even know the name of the title, but let's just use this simpler term. You're now Dictator of College Sports. What do you want it to look like in five years?
Andrew Luck: Oh what do I want it to look like? That's a great question. I think you know, this conference realignment was a big existential threat to a lot of schools. And it came to, and I think the next conversation is revenue sharing, especially of TV money to football athletes and all athletes to a certain degree. So I'm curious how that conversation goes, 'cause I think that's coming down the pipe and-
Peter Robinson: The NFL equalizes to some extent revenues among teams, doesn't it?
Condoleezza Rice: That's AFL, is yes, very much.
Peter Robinson: As opposed to baseball, for example.
Condoleezza Rice: Well, they have football, NFL has several things. A salary cap-
Peter Robinson: Right?
Condoleezza Rice: Which equalizes shared revenue, which equalizes and a draft, which equalizes.
Peter Robinson: Okay. And so would you like to see that operating within, first of all, would you, would you like to see a regional realignment or are you perfectly happy having Stanford be part of what is called, still, the Atlantic Coast Conference?
Condoleezza Rice: I'm all right with where we are now. I'm kind of excited about where we are right now, but eventually some of this may sort out. One of the big questions is, what will football do? Football is already separate in some ways from the rest of college sports. The college football playoffs are not actually an NCAA championship. They are a college football playoff championships. And so there may be some separations there. But if I can take the question that you didn't ask me, you asked Andrew-
Andrew Luck: I didn't answer either!
Condoleezza Rice: I think there are some positive developments. I do think if we could get name, image, and likeness back into a box where it's not about paying you to transfer to this school or that school, but rather you get to advertise something. And for most kids it is gonna be, if I put this on my Instagram, will you, will you give me a bike? I think that's okay if we can get some rules around it. But the piece that I really wanna emphasize again is we have to get back to, you went to do this because you wanted to get a college degree. That might change the dynamics of a transfer portal, for instance. 'Cause if you're, if you're just an ordinary student, you're hopping from university, you're not gonna actually finish because you won't transfer credits and so forth. So if we could get back to something that values the college degree for the athlete, that would be my greatest wish for college sports.
Peter Robinson: Can, on football, so if you are a really talented baseball player, you don't have to go to college. That's, you can enter the farm team system.
Condoleezza Rice: That's correct.
Peter Robinson: The NFL has benefited enormously as far as I can tell from using college athletics as a farm team.
Condoleezza Rice: Well, there are two points that make about that. One is in baseball, if you do go to college, you stay for three years.
Andrew Luck: Right?
Condoleezza Rice: But that was a deal that was made a long, long time ago. In the NFL, the problem is you don't want an 18 year old boy to play TJ Watt. And so the three or so years in college matter for physical development as well. That's one reason that the NFL system works that way.
Peter Robinson: Are you by, she's an owner, you know, you can rough her up if you want to. You're a player. You negotiated against the owners?
Andrew Luck: Yes, we did.
Peter Robinson: Feel free. Absolutely. You have one right here. Give her a piece of your mind right now.
Andrew Luck: I think I only ever saw Adrian Peterson and thought, oh my gosh, that guy could probably played in the NFL at age 18 or maybe Earl Campbell could have played at age 18,
Condoleezza Rice: But most couldn't?
Andrew Luck: And personal experience was, I'm very glad, you know, for the development opportunity in college.
Condoleezza Rice: But I would like to have, I would like to have particularly, and I'll tell you the sport that I think is most problematic in this regard is basketball. Because the so-called one and done-
Peter Robinson: One and done?
Condoleezza Rice: is not really one and done. It's seven months and then you're out once the tournament starts. And so they, the NBA needs a real minor league. They're starting to develop it a little bit with the G League as they call it, or now the Gatorade League. But that would be a big help because the kid who doesn't really want to go and get the degree shouldn't have to, should be able to go and play sports.
Andrew Luck: Absolutely. And I do want to go back. I keep thinking of NIL's almost indefensible that we didn't, in my opinion, that we didn't let kids profit off of their name, image, and likeness for a long, long time. And I think revenue sharing is a separate conversation that does need to happen.
Peter Robinson: You're sharpening up your first answer when I said, should you have been paid? You said "Meh," well now you're saying "Yay, doggone!"
Andrew Luck: Well, I think there's a couple different aspects to being paid.
Peter Robinson: All right?
Andrew Luck: And I think and I'm happy that Pandora's box is open, if you will.
Peter Robinson: You are?
Andrew Luck: Yeah, I think it's great. I think out of Pandora's box came a lot of things right, in the old myth, and I'm riffing this up. This is my dad's metaphor, so you know, I'm stealing it from him. But including hope was the last thing out of the box. And I do, you know, and part of the problem of transfer and, and NIL at the same time is the inducement of kids. We'll pay you more if you go over here, in recruiting. Which I think at its core was not supposed to be that way. But I do think it's a good case that kids can make money off the name, image of likeness that just feels foundationally positive.
Condoleezza Rice: Really, back at the old days, a sad thing for instance, kids who were suspended or thrown out of football 'cause they sold a jersey.
Andrew Luck: Yeah!
Condoleezza Rice: Really?
Andrew Luck: Right.
Condoleezza Rice: You know?
Andrew Luck: Right.
Peter Robinson: So both of you, NIL, transfer portal, my saying, wait a minute, what about the old ideals? And both of you're saying, if I'm summing you up correctly, there's work to be done. There are protocols that have to emerge. We have decisions to make, but fundamentally we're in a good place.
Condoleezza Rice: No.
Peter Robinson: No?
Condoleezza Rice: No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no. That's a bad summary, Peter. With all due respect, okay.
Peter Robinson: I'm trying to move toward a memorandum of understanding before we leave this negotiation.
Condoleezza Rice: So here's the memorandum of understanding-
Peter Robinson: Madam Secretary.
Condoleezza Rice: Something did need to change and the piece that probably needed to change was that athletes needed to be able to benefit from their name, image, and likeness, from the fact that they were becoming famous people.
Peter Robinson: Right?
Condoleezza Rice: As any influencer might have been in our world today, who wasn't an athlete, a college student who was an influencer and was making money, that I don't have a problem with that. I think the transfer portal has been a disaster for college sports because it has made it so that if you're not a very, very, very top player, you're not wanted and you don't get that chance to develop from 18 to 20 to figure out, "No, I'm actually really a good player and I worked really hard for it and I made it onto the team." So while some good things came out of this, a lot of bad things came out of it too. And I think our goal has to be as people who love these sports, who believe in the intercollegiate athletic model, who believe that places can exist, where you have both academics and athletics, is to figure out a way, maybe not to put the genie back in the bottle, but that there are a few places like here that try to do it the right way.
Peter Robinson: Does she sound a little like an owner to you? Is letting these pesky players go where they wanna play is a problem? Do you, would you like to-
Andrew Luck: You're good at stirring the pot, Peter.
Peter Robinson: Well is there any, is there any reply you care to make to me?
Andrew Luck: No, I think-
Peter Robinson: Or do you agree?
Andrew Luck: Athlete choice, health and safety? I think we agree on a lot of things.
Peter Robinson: Oh, now you're playing the diplomat, alright.
Andrew Luck: I really think we do. And I think... So few kids go professional and then so few kids go professional and make substantial enough money to live life with the privilege to do whatever one sort of pleases that, that I deeply believe in the value of education and what colleges and universities, you know, and sort of, and a degree, and the network and what that can give a cadre of young people growing up. And I think college sports are just... Like the regional rivalries and the traditions and the connective tissue that it breeds is just so important that I'd hate to see us stray too far away from what is this sort of quirky and very American about college athletics. Like it's hard to explain to someone from another country. You gotta bring 'em along and okay, and the next thing we have to go down to Tuscaloosa 'cause they do this, and then, oh, we're gonna go up to Pullman because they do the, it's-
Condoleezza Rice: Well, I will tell you one funny story about that and maybe Peter, you can... so I brought Jack Straw, who at the time was the foreign secretary of Great Britain. He's a huge fan of the huge, as he would say, football fan. So I brought him to an Alabama, Tennessee game.
Andrew Luck: Great.
Condoleezza Rice: I said, I want you to experience this.
Peter Robinson: Yeah.
Condoleezza Rice: So we went and we were asked to toss the coin at the beginning. And so we walk out of the tunnel and people are going, absolutely wild. 92,000. And Jack, who's a politician, is going like this. I said, Jack, they would cheer a squirrel if it came out of the tunnel at this point. Let's just go toss the coin and get it over. But to your point, it's really an American thing.
Andrew Luck: That's great.
Peter Robinson: Last questions here. I'm going to ask for three pieces of advice. One, I'd like to ask you both for your advice and then one for Condi and one for Andrew. And here's the first: Advice to a college football fan like me, that's advice to somebody who loved the game as it used to be played. Who thought there was something, maybe this is romantic, but thought there was something pure about a real amateur, a true student athlete who played because of the love of the game and who really was part of the institution for which he or she played. What's your advice to that fan? Get over it? What's your advice to the fan? To the dinosaur fan like me?
Andrew Luck: Not so strong as to get over it, but I'm bullish on where things are going. I think some things aren't great right now, but I think it's positive. And I think it's, I generally think steps that empower student athletes are good things. And I think there's really good football being played. Be a fan of good football. That's a good deal.
Condoleezza Rice: Yeah.
Peter Robinson: And your advice?
Condoleezza Rice: I would say write to your college alumni association and ask them to keep thinking about the academic piece of it. That that student athlete really needs to get a degree. And oh, by the way, I still think these kids love the game. Oh, I, you watch them on Saturday, they still love the game.
Andrew Luck: That's great.
Peter Robinson: Condi, this one's for you. We've been talking again and again and again about these few dozen schools. Let's maybe 130, let's say maybe 200 at the very top of the college sports structure. But again, there are almost 5,000 colleges and universities in this country. So let's imagine a small college or university somewhere in the middle of the country set, but it doesn't have to be in the middle of the country, right? Somewhere, that really wants to get into the big game, that wants to raise the money and build the facilities and attract the coaches and recruit the athletes. And it knows it's a decade long project, but it really wants to break into that top tier. You're a former provost. You are now an owner of a football. What, what advice would you give to that president and provost of that small college that wants to do this? Don't do it? Is it worth the effort?
Condoleezza Rice: No, I would say "Be sure you know what you're getting into." And by the way, by the time you get there, the rules of the game may have changed dramatically. So if you must just make sure that you're not doing it at the expense of your academic excellence.
Peter Robinson: Okay. Last question for Andrew. You're coaching across the El Camino at Palo Alto High School. You've got a kid who comes up to you afterwards and after a practice, you're coaching freshman, isn't that right?
Andrew Luck: Yep.
Peter Robinson: Who says, coach Luck, I wanna be like you. I wanna do what you did. So tell me to do, tell me what it's exactly what it's going to take to get into a big time college football program. I'll do it. I don't care how much sacrifice it involves, I'll do it. What do you say to that kid?
Andrew Luck: Well, I'd say dream bigger, do it better than me, is the first thing I'd say. And then we'd have a serious discussion about how the stars have to align for certain things to happen. That there's more than one road to success. So there's, there can be more than one dream, but I shoot, if the talent was there to play big time football, I would, I would hope that I could support this kid along their journey. And then I saw a really cute video on the internet that a friend sent to me of a college football player talking to a kid after a game. The kid came up and asked for a scholarship and said, or an autograph and said, I wanna be like you, right? And this, this was an offensive lineman, a big kid. And this must to been a fourth grader boy. And the first thing this 20 year old college football player said, "Well, how are your grades?" And the kid said, "Well, they're not very good." He's like, "Well, you know, you know, I got into here because I also have to do well at school. I get to play. 'cause I did well at school. I got a scholarship to go to the school and I play for the school." And you know, a year later the kid gets all A's on his report card or something and the mom shared a video about it. And know, I think that's part of what's really special. So few of us go pro, but playing in college I think opens up a number of doors. And so I'd say focus on your grades. You know, that is as important an arena as the football field. And, and I think you learn, the more curious you are, the better you learn how to learn, the better you're in school, that helps you be a better football player and vice versa. The more you learn about how to be on a team and accountable to each other and strategy, they reinforce each other, I think, in positive ways when done right.
Peter Robinson: Condoleezza Rice, former Secretary of State, Director of the Hoover Institution and owner of the Denver Broncos, Andrew Luck, former star on this football field, former quarterback for the Colts, and now freshman football coach at Palo Alto High School. Thank you both.
Andrew Luck: Thank you.
Condoleezza Rice: Thank you.
Peter Robinson: For the Hoover Institution, I'm Peter Robinson.