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Monday, December 7, 2009
Report: Stanford QB Luck doubtful for Sun Bowl

By ESPN.com staff
ESPN.com

Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck had surgery on a finger in his right, throwing hand and won't start the Sun Bowl against Oklahoma, the Stanford Daily -- the student newspaper -- reported and ESPN.com confirmed.

Coach Jim Harbaugh wouldn't rule him out of the Dec. 31 game in El Paso, Tex.

"He's going to be out of practice at least two to three weeks," Harbaugh told the Pac-10 blog Monday. "He's not ruled out of the game, but based on what we know right now, he won't start. We'll have to see how his finger heals and see what his availability is for the game. It will be a game-week decision."

Luck's backup is senior Tavita Pritchard, who has started 19 games in his career but was eclipsed by Luck during spring practices.

Obviously, a huge blow to Stanford's chances.

The Sooners now likely will gang up on the line of scrimmage to stop Toby Gerhart and dare Pritchard to beat them with the passing game. A defense couldn't do that with the talented Luck running the Cardinal offense.

Of course, it was Pritchard who engineered the stunning victory at USC in 2007.

"This team doesn't make excuses," Harbaugh said. "There's injuries in football."

The Cardinal already lost linebacker Clinton Snyder, defensive end Erik Lorig, offensive tackles Matt Kopa and Allen Smith and defensive tackle Brian Bulcke to injuries this season.

Of course, Oklahoma knows all about losing star players to injuries. It's played without All-American tight end Jermaine Gresham the entire season and quarterback Sam Bradford, the 2008 Heisman Trophy winner, most of the year.