All about Andrew Luck’s wife- Nicole Pechanec: She was a star gymnast at Stanford

Andrew Luck recently appeared pitchside for ESPN during an Alabama-Georgia game in Indianapolis. The former Colts quarterback – who sported an epic mustache – looked happy as he offered advice to the quarterbacks. Luck retired in 2018 after suffering from injuries throughout his NFL career. 

“It’s been four years of this pain, rehab cycle,” Luck explained his retirement. “It’s a myriad of issues – calf strain, posterior ankle impingement, high ankle sprain. Part of my journey going forward will be figuring out how to feel better.” 

When asked what he’s been doing since his retirement, Andrew said: “Full-time daddy duty. It’s been a complete joy.” Luck shares parenting duty with his wife, Nicole Pechanec. 

Nicole Pechanec ‘spent the first 20 years of her life traveling the world in the midst of chalk dust and athletic tape.’ She performed as a gymnast for the Czech Republic, competing on three World Championship teams. 

Pechanec was born in Newark, New Jersey, to Czech parents, who moved the family to the Czech Republic when she was young. Nicole’s mother, a former gymnast, coached Pechanec. 

She joined Stanford’s gymnastics team and led the team to two NCAA titles. She majored in Architectural Design in class, graduating in 2012 alongside Andrew Luck. 

In 2012, she earned employment at Browning Day Mullins Dierdorf Architects. She briefly joined NASA as she pursued a Master of Business Administration. She completed her degree in 2017. 

Nicole is a board member for the non-profit, Nest, and is ambitious about careers in television and entrepreneurship. Her LinkedIn page reads:

“Nicole aspires to grow in her two-pronged career as a social entrepreneur and through her involvement in the gymnastics community as a field producer for NBC and ESPN. She embraces life’s opportunities and is grateful for the people that have led her along the way.”

Nicole and Andrew met at Stanford and have been together ever since. 

They married in March 2019 in Nicole’s native Prague, Czech Republic. “It was awesome,” Luck told USA Today. “It was the best day of my life, and probably the best offseason I’ve ever had.”

“It’s great. We’ve been together for a decade, so not much has changed besides the ring on the fingers, and she’s got great insurance now.”

Months after the wedding, Luck announced Nicole’s pregnancy with the couple’s first child. He described the prospect of welcoming a child as exciting and terrifying. He said (per USA Today):

“It certainly feels more real every day. I hope I could do all right. (There are) a lot of people to lean on for advice and we’ll see what happens.”

Nicole gave birth to the couple’s daughter, Lucy, on 12th November 2019. Luck said that he’d spent his time in retirement taking care of the 2-year-old child. 

Andrew Luck sat out the 2017 season with an injury to his throwing arm. He returned in 2018 and passed for 39 touchdowns, earning the NFL Comeback Player of the Year award. Luck credited Nicole for her support as he underwent treatment in Europe. Luck told Quarterback:

“Honestly, though, I wouldn’t have gotten through it if not for Nicole. It isn’t just she willing to do anything she could to help me. It’s that she’s tough. She knows what training is like, what it’s like to feel pain, and what it’s like to work really hard. There’s no way I get through those two months without her.”

After his retirement, Andrew revealed that retirement saved his marriage to Nicole. “I don’t think I’m married if that [retirement] had not happened,” Luck told Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer. 

Andrew drew validation from his achievements on the pitch, neglecting other relationships. Consequently, his relationship with Nicole suffered almost to the point of ending. He explained:

“It was very unhealthy, first for me, second for the relationship with my now-wife, and my other relationships. The result has been the best thing that ever could’ve happened. It forced me to look in the mirror and do a character assessment and address the things I didn’t like.”

In his conversation with Breer, Andrew credited a healthy home life for his spectacular 2018 season. He worked on his presence and communication at home, unexpectedly improving his output on the field. 

“Get your work done at the building, and when you go home, be present,” Andrew said. “And if I wasn’t, I addressed it with my wife – ‘I need to call on this right now, because this is on my mind, and it can’t wait till morning.’ And in an odd way, that helped football. It helped me work harder, work smarter, be more present at football, be in it.”

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