Andy Darkins: from the football field to the campaign trail

Darkins_1Oregon State football player Andy Darkins has put an end to his football career, after a tough shoulder injury last year.

But he's not moping around campus. Rather, Darkins is off to Coos Bay - where he's helping State Rep. Arnie Roblan (D) get re-elected. From the Oregonian:

Darkins, who has a double major in history and political science, said he's dropped out of school this term and he's working in the Coos Bay/North Bend area on state representative Arnie Roblan's re-election campaign.

Roblan, a Democrat from District 9, said he loves having a linebacker's mentality on his staff. "He's a great kid who works hard, and he understands politics," Roblan said.

"He's intense about everything he does, and once he commits to something, it's a total commitment, whether he's making phone calls to identify voters, or calling meetings to make sure I'm doing what I'm supposed to do."

After all, Darkins was well-known at Oregon State both for his football prowess - as well as his outspoken commentary on sports, politics, and the politics of sports. More from the Big O:

Darkins made headlines with his play on the field, ruffled some feathers with a no-holds-barred sports column in the campus newspaper that skewered the likes of athletic director Bob De Carolis and Nike's Phil Knight, and made it no secret that he someday would like to run for governor.

He was a "liberal democrat" who was considered a model student-athlete by the coaching staff, a politically active force on campus who obliterated "dumb jock" stereotypes.

To Darkins, football wasn't life and death. It was just a small part of who he was, but man, was it ever fun. . . . "I'm so grateful I got to play with such a great group of guys," he said. "It's tough (to give up football), but I think it was Bob Dylan who said if you're not constantly reinventing yourself, you're standing still."

We haven't seen the last of Andy Darkins. As he told the Corvallis Gazette-Times last year, "The state of affairs in this country right now is really bugging me."

  • (Show?)

    What a cool story. He sounds like the kind of guy who stays positive no matter what. I'm glad he's on our side.

  • JTT (unverified)

    Darkins is a great addition to the south coast campaign. He's smart, quick, witty, and always up for a challenge. He was always passionate and hard working in the Legislature even with football. Roblan and his campaign manager are lucky to have him.

  • Chuck Paugh (unverified)

    All I've got to say about this issue is take yourself back in time to high school and college...

    Remember all the football players, the stereo-typical jocks such as Darkins...

    Now, I want you to imagine them giving you a political opinion or even considering a run for office...

    Have you stopped laughing yet? No? Me either.

  • (Show?)

    Ah, Chuck, but that's just the point. Andy Darkins is NOT a stereotypical jock.

    Now, is it a bit early for him to be talking about running for governor? Yes... but not too early for him to be writing commentaries for his school paper, volunteering on a campaign, and speaking his mind.

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