2017 HOF Academy High School invitee makes it from Mexico to Buffalo

2017 HOF Academy High School invitee makes it from Mexico to Buffalo

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Story Courtest of Chicago Tribune

Growing up in central Mexico, most of Ian Luyando’s friends trended toward soccer.

But football was Luyando’s passion.

In fact, his quarterbacking skills were polished enough for him to earn an invitation to a 2017 Pro Football Hall of Fame Academy training camp in Canton, Ohio.

That formative experience set the wheels in motion for Luyando and his family to relocate to the northwest suburbs, where Luyando would attend Buffalo Grove High School.

“Ever since I was little, I wanted to move to the U.S.,” Luyando said. “It’s a better opportunity for my family, and I wanted to play against the best. It’s amazing that it’s happened.”

It only happened in August.

However, Luyando and his younger brother, Andre, a 6-foot-5 sophomore receiver playing on the Bison JV team, have quickly and smoothly integrated into the Buffalo Grove program and American culture.

Their transition has been helped along by many teammates who are willing to provide some guidance on multiple fronts.

“It already feels like a family, which I really appreciate,” Ian Luyando said. “Everyone has helped us with a lot of things, like where to eat and get a haircut, things like that.”

Andre Luyando has only been playing football for two years, so he hasn’t developed his game quite as much as his older brother has. Learning the nuances of football and filling out his thin frame are priorities in his developmental arc.

“I’m really getting used to the sport, and I feel it will be another really two good years after this,” Andre Luyando said.

Ian Luyando’s on-field development was initially curtailed by a torn ACL in his left knee. That injury took place earlier in the year in Mexico. He was cleared to play for a Week 3 JV game, but an overzealous tackle resulted in a minor surgical procedure last Friday.

“I want to play this season, but I’m not going to rush it,” Ian Luyando said.

Whenever Luyando does return, Buffalo Grove coach Jeff Vlk envisions him making a sizable impact. He’s been particularly impressed by Ian’s football IQ.

“On one of the first days of practice, he asked, ‘Do you want me to look off the safety on that route?' ” Vlk recalled. “His knowledge of football is better than a lot of people in the U.S. And he was tearing it up in one game before he got hurt.”

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