Tom Hanson: Irish's Quinn could be the next Brady
By TOM HANSON, firstname.lastname@example.org
December 18, 2005
Brady Quinn was destined to become a celebrity.
The Notre Dame quarterback is an "Entertainment Tonight" regular waiting to happen.
He's got the GQ looks, the Tom Brady-like moxie on the field, and a drop-dead gorgeous sister, Laura, who is dating the enemy.
Quinn and the Irish will face Ohio State in the Fiesta Bowl on Jan. 2. And as he calls out the plays, Laura's beau will be looking to knock his head off.
Laura Quinn's boyfriend is none other than A.J. Hawk, Ohio State's All-American linebacker who is projected to be a top-10 pick in the NFL. The long-haired Hawk and the leggy brunette met in Columbus, the Quinns' hometown.
It's reminiscent of the Brady Bunch, no puns intended.
Remember when Marcia dated the rival high school's quarterback, who happened to be more interested in stealing her brother Greg's playbook?
But both players say there's not going to be any hanky panky here. Actually, the two hadn't even met until 10 days ago at the ESPN College Football Awards show at Disney World.
"I'm definitely going to have a talk with him," Brady said, his baby blues looking like he couldn't hurt a doe. "I'm sure he's a nice guy if he's dating my sister. She's got pretty good judgment."
Quinn doesn't need an US Magazine-esque love triangle to pump up his image.
He's guided the Irish's resurgence, going 9-2 and earning a BCS bowl game, and grabbed a few headlines on his own.
With the hiring of Charlie Weis at Notre Dame, Quinn has come into his own. He's made Beano Cook, who has been touting Quinn for the Heisman before he ever set foot on the South Bend campus, look like a genius.
Quinn flourished under Weis, throwing for 32 touchdowns and 3,633 yards.
Immediately, the comparisons to Tom Brady, Weis' former quarterback at New England, started.
Ironically, they were deserved.
Since middle school, watching Tom Brady play at Michigan, Quinn has idolized him.
"He is someone I felt like I was similar with in style," said Quinn, who finished fourth in the Heisman voting. "It was a weird connection with Coach Weis coming to Notre Dame, how the name falls in there. I recognize the similarities on the field and everything he does is something you want to emulate."
Brady and Quinn have never met.
Coach Weis once had Brady call Quinn but they never talked.
Quinn was eating dinner at an assistant coach's home.
"I didn't want to be rude and step away from the dinner table," said Quinn.
"So he left me a long message, which was nice. I'm kind of disappointed that I missed his call."
Brady wished Quinn luck â€” except against Michigan. And he gave Quinn some advice about Coach Weis' hard-love approach to the quarterbacks.
"He said, 'I know coach can be hard on quarterbacks, especially when you're the starter, but just keep doing your thing and don't take it personally. He's just trying to make you better,' " Quinn recalled.
Quinn is much better with Weis. He could be a No. 1 overall pick in the NFL if he stays another year. One thing for sure, he's already become a bona fide celebrity.