Chat with Justin Tuck
Tuck finished his Notre Dame career with a school-record 24.5 quarterback sacks and set a single-season Notre Dame record with 13.5 sacks in 2003. He was voted the Irish's Most Valuable Player in 2004 while leading the team in tackles for loss in with 14 for 57 yards.
Tuck recently made a wish come true for a young man with muscular dystrophy. Seventeen year-old Dwayne Crouch, who is wheelchair-bound, is a fan of the NFL and NBA and has idolized Tuck for most of his high school and collegiate career. With the help of Omni Hotels, Nike, and the Atlanta Hawks, Tuck has arranged for he and Crouch to take an April 16th trip to Niketown Atlanta and that evening's Atlanta Hawks-Chicago Bulls game. At the Hawks game, they will tour the locker room and meet some of the Hawks players before the game.
Send your questions now and join Tuck in The Show on Tuesday at 2:30 p.m. ET!
The ShowGirl (2:29 PM)
Welcome to The Show! ND draft prospect Justin Tuck will be here shortly. Send in those questions now!
Justin Tuck (2:35 PM)
Hey everybody, I'm here and I'm ready for your questions.
Porp ((Boston, MA))
this year's DE class is very deep. names like spears, cody, james, and pollack. where do you stack up against these guys we've been hearing so much about. what does justin tuck bring to the table?
Justin Tuck (2:37 PM)
I think I stack up pretty well. I feel like I am probably the most athletic guy of the group. I come to the table a little more seasoned after facing the best competition there is out there in college. I also feel like I am the best pass rusher of the group.
Justin, Do you think your just a pure DE or could you be OLB in a 3-4 scheme?
Justin Tuck (2:38 PM)
I would prefer to play DE, but my athleticism allows me to play both. I could do either, but IF I was given the choice, I would rather play defensive end.
Rob (Dallas, Tx)
Which NFL city's night life could you most see yourself in, or wish you spend your time in??
Justin Tuck (2:39 PM)
Well, right now, that has no bearing on where I'd want to play or where I'll end up (laughing) but as far as night life, probably Atlanta because it is close to me.
Which team did you grow up rooting for?
Justin Tuck (2:40 PM)
I grew up rooting for two actually -- the 49ers and Dallas. It's kind of strange, I know, but I was a fan of both. ... But, I love the Giants, too, Kent! Shout out to New York!
Kyle Levy (Palm Harbor, FL)
Are you excited about being in MAdden 2006?
Justin Tuck (2:41 PM)
I was totally excited. It's kind of like when I first got on NCAA football. It's great to see that reality. Growing up with TechnoBowl and the likes, to see this, to be in this, something so real just puts you in awe.
Drew (Blacksburg VA)
Hows the knee doing?
Justin Tuck (2:42 PM)
My knee is feeling pretty good. I've been working out and I'm back to doing everything full speed so I'm feeling great. It's back to normal.
How do you feel about lining up for the Eagles in the fall, on the same line as The Freak?
Justin Tuck (2:43 PM)
Well, then they'd have The Freak and the Freak II. Any time you get to play with a person like that, you'd get a lot of one-on-one opportunities to learn from the best. AND, when you play with someone of that calibur it takes some of the attention off of you, so I would love to play with The Freak!
Hey Justin, you are going to have to lose the nickname 'The Freak' when you go pro... are any other nicknames in the works, yet?
Justin Tuck (2:44 PM)
Kate, do you have any suggestions? You're right, I'm going to have to lose my nickname.
Who helped you the most in your times of need, need it be a family member, a coach, fellow student. Someone you are really going to enjoy sharing this experience with?
Justin Tuck (2:46 PM)
For me, I'm lucky to have a lot of close friends -- through football or through my family. I have a very close tie with everybody in my family -- my mother and my father, my sisters and my brother -- without them I wouldn't be where I am today. I can really confide in each of them.
Adam (San Diego)
What are some teams that have expessed interest in you? Are the Chargers one of those teams?
Justin Tuck (2:48 PM)
Yep, the Chargers. And Pitts, Dallas, Jacksonville, Minnesota, Kansas City, Cincy ...
Tony (Danbury, CT)
Whats the first thing you buy with the signing bonus
Justin Tuck (2:49 PM)
I'll buy my mother and my father a car ... OR, whatever they want.
Justin I just really enjoyed watching you play for Notre Dame and I know that you want to be drafted sooner but I love Green Bay and they need some defense...could you stand that cold weather?
Justin Tuck (2:49 PM)
If I could stand to play at Notre Dame, I can stand to play anywhere, Antoine!
Keith (Golden Domer '84)
Hey Justin, before we talk about the future, lets talk about the past for a second. What was it like at ND when Ty Willingham was fired? Do you think he deserved it? What's your take?
Justin Tuck (2:51 PM)
It was hard. I don't think Coach deserved it, I don't feel like they gave him ample opportunity -- he didn't even have a senior class. He'll do great things at Washington. For us players, it was a difficult time. We felt like the University kind of abandoned us and didn't take us into consideration as this was happening -- we didn't really know what was going on until it was over. But, it makes you realize college football is almost as much of a business as the NFL is.
Are you still in touch with some of your old ND teammates? How is transition to Charlie Weis' staff going in Spring Ball
Justin Tuck (2:52 PM)
I'm definitely still in touch with them -- Anthony, Julius, Courtney and a couple other guys. They love the business-like atmosphere that Charlie Weis brings. I think he'll be very successful at ND.
Any friendly bets as to who goes first in the draft with your former teammates and what is the bet?
Justin Tuck (2:53 PM)
None. No bets.
Did you play in the bookstore basketball tournament at ND?
Justin Tuck (2:54 PM)
Haha. Freshman year I won the MVP! My team was the champs. We went to the final game and lost my sophomore year, but I was MVP again. And that was the end of my run. I didn't play anymore after that.
whats one player in the league youd want oppisite you at DE
Justin Tuck (2:56 PM)
There's a lot of 'em James. Strahan, Kearse -- you name it, there's a lot of them out there! Who wouldn't want to play with those guys!
What will you miss most about Notre Dame, outside of football?
Justin Tuck (2:56 PM)
The camraderie. Getting to know those guys on the football team and the alumni base. All the people you meet through that great university -- that's what I'll miss most.
How had is it to balance playing sports with academics at ND? Is that why recruiting is so tough for the Irish?
Justin Tuck (2:58 PM)
You hit the jackpot, Chris. That's exactly why. YOu have to be equal at both -- great at football and great at dedicating yourself to the academics at Notre Dame. It's hard. There are no rooty-toot classes for athletes in South Bend.
If you could control your own destiny which area of the country(Northwest, Southwest, Northeast, etc.) would you choose to play in?
Justin Tuck (2:59 PM)
Southeast just b/c I'm from Alabama and that is home for me.
Justin, can you tell us about the pro visits you taken so far?
Justin Tuck (3:00 PM)
Right now I've only gone to Minnesota -- that was a nice relaxed atmosphere with Coach Tice and his guys. I had a nice time there, I just got back yesterday. I have about four more set up -- I'll be in Dallas tomorrow and in ATlanta on Friday.
If you were stranded on an island and could bring one type of food with you, and one celebrity female, what, and who would they be ? Thanks !
Justin Tuck (3:02 PM)
(Laughing) Food -- chicken. Celebrity female -- man -- are you sure I can't bring two? Nah, I'd have to go with Halle Berry ... just because, she's Halle Berry.
Whats Up Tuck? This is Brad's brother Matthew. Im in the Navy and stationed in Naples, Italy. I just wanted to let you know im supporting you over here and good luck in the nfl.
Justin Tuck (3:02 PM)
Thanks Matthew! I appreciate it!
Hey JT Congrats on a great season and Go Irish. I am a huge fan. What would you think about trying to help rebuild a defense say in a place like Indianapolis as compared to going to say Pittsburgh where a defense is already in place
Kyle Levy (Palm Harbor, FL)
How do you like Indiana?
Justin Tuck (3:04 PM)
I like Indiana, and I know Coach Dungy is rebuilding that defense, but I think he already has a guy he can build it around in Freeney. I would love to be out in Indy and playing with Dwight.
Kyle (columbus, Ohio)
Dallas needs your type of pass rushing ability, would you enjoy playing for such a hard-nosed coach like Bill Parcels?
Justin Tuck (3:05 PM)
I would LOVE to play for coach Parcells.
Matt (Lancaster, PA)
Have you talked to Julius Jones about what it is like playing for the Dallas Cowboys and coach Parcells? And, how would Justin Tuck look with a Blue Star on his helmet?
Justin Tuck (3:06 PM)
Talking to Julius Jones, he only raves about what a great coach Parcells is. I'd feel damn near honored to play for him. With a blue star on my helmet, I'd look like a beast! ... A sexy beast! ... Haha. I'm only playing.
Randy (Denver, CO)
Hey Justin I am a big fan of yours but not a big ND fan. I am a BAMA fan but anyways how do you feel you will make the transition to the NFL? I personaly think you are underrated but how do you feel about your draft status?
Justin, a lot of folks list you as one of the most underrated folks in the draft, would you agree?
Justin Tuck (3:07 PM)
I would agree. I think I am underrated ... I don't know why. But, whoever gets me, I can promise they are going to get a great player, so ...
What round do you think you should go in?
Justin Tuck (3:08 PM)
Bill (Salinas, CA)
JT if you could do it over again, would you still go to ND?
Justin Tuck (3:09 PM)
Umm. Yes, I would. Just because God has a plan for everybody's life, so there was obviously a reason why He wanted me to go to Notre Dame. Everything happens for a reason.
The question should be.... what round do you think you will get drafted in?
Justin Tuck (3:10 PM)
The ShowGirl (3:10 PM)
Same answer folks! Justin says he is first round material!
Hey Justin. Great game against the Vols this year. Where is the spot where you are hearing you might get drafted? Do you pay attention to the papers and projections?
Justin Tuck (3:12 PM)
I don't pay attention to them just b/c no one knows where anybody is going right now. The draft is so crazy. I know a bunch of guys have me slotted between 13 and 28 -- so, who knows.
where's the best post draft party gonna be for the tuck family?
Justin Tuck (3:13 PM)
In my homtown -- Kellyton, Alabama. Me and my family ... you're invited!
Hey Tuck just wanted to say sorry for not seeing you one more time at that dinner at ND, do you think it'd be possible if u got drafted by the seahawks? What would you think of that?
Justin Tuck (3:15 PM)
Seattle is a beautiful place -- rain or not -- I'd love to play there! ... I think I'd love to play anywhere right now. (laughing)
Is the ND experience as mystique and sacred as portrayed?
Justin Tuck (3:18 PM)
It is -- I mean -- it's a culture shock coming from the south and being in the midwest. But, Notre Dame, itself, on the campus, it's hard to explain, but it really does feel different than anywhere else.
I know you had one more year of eligibility left, but what made you decide to declare this year with the Defensivie End class being loaded with talent?
Justin Tuck (3:20 PM)
I thought about it a lot but I think it's the best thing for me and my family right now. The competiton really doesn't bother me, because I feel like I stack up really well with those guys. That said, I was really close to coming back, don't get me wrong, I would have loved to play for Coach Weiss and with my teammates one more year, but I just felt like going to the NFL was the best thing for me and my family at this time.
I just wanted to tell you that I am a loyal Notre Dame fan and wanted to thank you for your years of hard work there. I wish you nothing but the best in the NFL.
Justin Tuck (3:22 PM)
Thanks Mike. Thanks everybody for logging on today, I appreaciate all the questions and the support and good luck. Go Irish, and God bless!