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Chris Leak
№: 12     Montreal Alouettes

Leak (second from the left) visits President George W. Bush during ceremonies at the White House.
Date of birth: May 3, 1985 (1985-05-03) (age 24)
Place of birth: Charlotte, North Carolina
Career information
Status: Active
CFL status: Import
Position(s): Quarterback(QB)
Height: 6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Weight: 207 lb (94 kg)
Jersey №: 12
College: Florida
Organizations
 As player:
2007
2008
2008
2008-present
Chicago Bears
Team Florida (AAFL)*
Hamilton Tiger-Cats
Montreal Alouettes

* Offseason and/or practice squad member only

Career highlights and awards

2002 Hall Trophy
2003 Pete Dawkins Trophy
2007 BCS National Championship MVP

Playing stats at CFL.ca
Playing stats at NFL.com

Christopher Patrick Leak (born May 3, 1985 in Charlotte, North Carolina) is an American football quarterback for the Montreal Alouettes of the Canadian Football League. He played college football at Florida. He was originally signed as an undrafted free agent by the Chicago Bears of the National Football League. He was selected by Team Florida of the All American Football League in the league's inaugural draft in April 2008. After it was announced that the AAFL would begin play in 2009, rather than 2008, he signed with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats of the CFL on June 3, 2008. However due to an injury he did not participate in the team's training camp, and was released three days later. One day after his release, he was claimed by the Montreal Alouettes.

In 2006, Leak led the Florida Gators to a 13–1 record, which culminated with a 41–14 win over the top-ranked Ohio State Buckeyes in the 2007 BCS National Championship Game.

Contents

High school career

Chris attended Independence High School in Charlotte where he led his high school team to 3 consecutive state championships and a near perfect record having lost only once as a starter under head coach Tommy Knotts. He set North Carolina state records for passing yards in a career (15,593) and completions in a career (1,013), as well as the national record for touchdown passes in a career (185). The Scout recruiting service ranked Leak as a "five star" prospect coming out of high school, and the third best quarterback in the 2002 recruiting class.

College career

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Freshman (2003)

Chris began his career at Florida as a freshman, seeing playing time in the first few games, and taking over as the starter in the game against Kentucky. Leak finished his freshman year with a Southeastern Conference record for a freshman going 6-3 as a starter including wins over the eventual National Champion, LSU and rival, Georgia. Chris was named to the SEC All-Freshman Team and Rivals.com’s Freshman All American Team.

Sophomore (2004)

In his sophomore year, Chris' quarterback skills progressed, transforming him into one of the notable quarterbacks in college football. He started all of Florida’s games, including a memorable school record-tying six touchdown performance against South Carolina. However, following a disappointing loss to unranked Mississippi State and an on-campus confrontation with a fraternity house, head coach Ron Zook was fired. After the Mississippi State loss and the removal of Ron Zook as head coach, Leak was rumored to have been transferring to Toledo. In December of that year, head coach Urban Meyer was hired and introduced his spread offense. Dan Mullen was introduced as the offensive coordinator. This would be the third offensive coordinator change for Leak.

Junior (2005)

Heading into his junior season, Leak had to learn a third offensive scheme in as many years. He was touted as a possible Heisman Trophy candidate. Chris won his first five games, including a big win over SEC East rival Tennessee, but struggled in the option portion of the offense. Since Leak was a drop back passer and not the ideal choice to run Meyer's spread option offense, Meyer tweaked the offense to tailor it to Leak's abilities after the Gators struggled midway through its schedule. The result was successful with the team winning its last two games against ranked competition in 2005.

Senior (2006)

Heading into his senior season, there was speculation that Leak might not be the starting quarterback in 2006 due to the emergence of talented freshman Tim Tebow.[1] This speculation proved false when Florida head coach, Urban Meyer, publicly endorsed Leak to be the starting quarterback and affirmed that Tim Tebow will play the back-up role. Preseason analysis showed that Florida had the hardest schedule in the country. Florida would have to play Tennessee, Kentucky, Alabama, LSU, Auburn, and Georgia in back to back weeks. The 2006 season proved to be a redemption year for Leak: leading the Gators to their first SEC Championship since 2000, and a spot in the 2007 BCS National Championship Game against Ohio State University (their first championship game appearance since 1996). Leak also broke many University of Florida passing records set by Heisman Trophy winner Danny Wuerffel. He eclipsed Wuerffel's record for career passing yards at Florida during the 2006 SEC championship.

Leak led the Florida Gators to their second National Championship win with a 41–14 victory over Ohio State on January 8, 2007, taking home the offensive MVP award for the game. Leak's performance was solid throughout the championship game, completing his first nine passes at the start of the game. His final games stats includes completing 25 of 36 passes for 213 yards and one touchdown-- sealing a University of Florida rout of Ohio State University.

Chris Leak graduated from the University of Florida in the Fall 2006 semester with a degree in Sociology from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. He was a finalist for the Draddy Trophy, also known as the Academic Heisman for college athletes. He was a keynote speaker during the graduation ceremony, an honor only a handful of individuals are allowed to participate in due to their achievements in college. During his speech, he thanked mentor Joel Salituri for setting a lifelong example to which Leak "hopes to one day aspire".

While in college, Leak was listed on the SEC Academic Honor Roll each semester at UF. His mentors describe him as possessing tremendous motivation, compassion and the unique ability to lead by example. His peers agreed and elected him team captain three of the four years he played at UF.

When he's not on the field, Leak volunteers with children through the Goodwill Gators Program, encouraging them to put school first and stay away from drugs if they want to succeed. At home in Charlotte, N.C., he works with the Boys and Girls Club and the Steele Creek Youth Athletic Association. He served as an inspirational speaker with the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and spoke at area middle schools encouraging students to stay focused on their goals.

Professional career

NFL

Leak was not selected during the 2007 NFL Draft. The Chicago Bears signed him immediately after the draft.[2] He spent the summer of 2007 working with the team, and training under former Gator Rex Grossman.[3] However, Leak only saw playtime during the final game of the preseason, where he completed eleven of sixteen passes for eighty-eight yards, an interception and touchdown.[4] He was eventually cut on September 16.

For the 2008 season, Leak tried out with the Kansas City Chiefs.[5]

AAFL

In November 2007, Leak announced his intentions to play for Team Florida in the All American Football League.[6] He was later drafted in the 6th round by Team Florida. Due to fundings the All American Football League was postponed until the 2009 season; Leak (like all AAFL players) was released from his contract.

CFL

On June 3, 2008, Chris Leak signed with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats of the Canadian Football League[7]. He was claimed by the Montreal Alouettes on June 9th after being released a day earlier. With backup QB Adrian McPherson injured, Leak was on the active roster for the August 21, 2009 match against the Saskatchewan Roughriders, in which he threw his first career CFL touchdown pass on his first play.[8] Leak was part of the Montreal Alouettes who won the 2009 Grey Cup. He did not appear in the game.

References

  1. ^ USATODAY.com - Senior Leak will remain starter; freshman Tebow turning heads
  2. ^ Palm Beach Post, Chris Leak to Chicago Bears Retrieved on April 29, 2007
  3. ^ Chicagobears.com, Leak sees Bears as 'best situation for me' Retrieved on May 14, 2007
  4. ^ ChicagoBears.com, Browns v. Bears Box Score, Retrieved on September 15, 2007.
  5. ^ FOX Sports on MSN - Rumors
  6. ^ Gatorsports.com, Leak to try out for AAFL Retrieved on September 22, 2007
  7. ^ Slam.ca, Hamilton Tiger-Cats sign former Florida Gators quarterback Chris Leak Retrieved on June 3, 2008
  8. ^ "Leak, Calvillo lead Als’ win". Canadian Press (Halifax Chronicle Herald). 2009-08-22. http://thechronicleherald.ca/Sports/1138741.html. Retrieved 2009-08-22.  

External links

Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Vince Young
U.S. Army All-American Bowl MVP
2003
Succeeded by
Ted Ginn, Jr.
Sporting positions
Preceded by
Ingle Martin
Florida Gators Starting Quarterback
2003–2006
Succeeded by
Tim Tebow

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