Jim Harbaugh won't be coaching Andrew Luck this season, and unless the San Francisco 49ers undergo a stunning collapse in 2011, the future No. 1 pick won't be coached by Harbaugh again anytime soon.
But that doesn't mean Luck isn't doing his best to help out the coach who made him the presumptive 2011 Heisman favorite. How? By teaching Harbaugh's next quarterback, new 49ers second-round draft pick Colin Kaepernick, the essentials of the Harbaugh offense. As the Sacramento Bee reports:
Kaepernick and Luck met over the summer at the Manning Passing Academy in Thibodaux, La. They remarked on how similar they were – tall, mobile, with big right arms – and became friends who traded text messages throughout the 2010 season.Despite not being able to meet with Harbaugh (or any Niners coaches) due to the lockout, Kaepernick is busy moving to nearby Santa Clara, where he'll have easy access to both the Niners' facilities once the lockout lifts and -- perhaps more importantly for the immediate future -- Luck's Stanford campus. (Kaepernick may also have received a playbook, which Harbaugh distributed to some Niner veterans who may have had an opportunity to share one with their new teammate.)
When Harbaugh and the 49ers moved up nine spots last Friday to draft Kaepernick in the second round, he received a call from Luck. More conversations are sure to follow.
"Especially if the lockout stays on," Kaepernick said last week. "I'm going to try and pick his brain as much as I can and try to get a jump-start into this offense, and pick up as much as I can from him."
As discussed in this week's draft roundtable, the pistol-trained Kaepernick faces as difficult as transition to an NFL offense as any major quarterback prospect in this year's (or any recent) draft. But short of Harbaugh himself, it's hard to imagine any potential resource more helpful than a tutoe as advanced as Luck. And hey, if Kaepernick can teach Luck some of the play-fake magic he employed in the pistol, so much the better for the Cardinal.