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The Long, Weird Journey Of Andrew Hatch

by Ryan Hudson

Defending champion LSU opens their 2008 season this Saturday at home against (everyone's favorite Championship Subdivision team) Appalachian State, and they have still yet to name a starting quarterback (yes, believe it or not, college football starts this week; more specifically, tomorrow night). One of the two signal-callers who are battling for the Tigers' starting job, and the odds-on favorite to win the spot, is sophomore Andrew Hatch, and he has an interesting tale.

Hatch, a native of Provo, Utah (how did BYU let a QB leave the state?) began his collegiate career at...Harvard. In 2005, his freshman season, he was the quarterback for the Crimson's JV-team. His most notable accomplishment, according to his bio, was throwing a touchdown and running for another against Yale at the Yale Bowl.

Following his first year in Cambridge, Hatch left school for what was supposed to be a two-year mission to Chile (he's Mormon - seriously, how did BYU not land this guy?). However, just five months into his trip, he injured his knee while playing soccer, and was forced to return home for surgery and rehab.

Then, last summer, Hatch transferred to LSU, walked onto the team and eventually earned himself a scholarship. He played in exactly one game for the Tigers, a 44-0 win over Middle Tennessee, and went 1-for-2 passing, for nine yards. That amazing success was quickly derailed, though, because of a shoulder injury, which forced him to miss the remainder of the season as a red-shirt.

Now, we're three days from the Tigers opening their season, and he could very well be their starting QB.

Quite a long way from Mr. Bartley's and Harvard Square.

(H/T: The Sporting Blog)