Beyond Lucky

by Adam Strubhart ’17

Lucky Baar
Lucky Baar ’17 was a four-year starter at defensive end for the Bearcats, and continually rewrote the record books. Lucky’s success with football began in high school when he played for Morgan Park in Chicago, Ill. His senior year, he was a first-team All-City selection. “When I was playing high school ball, I clearly remember a coach saying to me I was barely good enough to play college ball,” said Lucky. As it turns out, Lucky not only proved to himself that he indeed was good enough to play collegiate football, but he also proved that coach to be very wrong.

Over the course of his collegiate career, Lucky earned numerous awards and honors. In 2014, he was the Great Lakes Valley Conference (GLVC) Defensive Player of the Year. During his senior season, he was named to the Associated Press Little All-American first-team, was a finalist for the Cliff Harris Award and earned NCAA Division II All-American first-team honors for the second time in four years.

To cap off his amazing senior season, Lucky earned the Division II Conference Commissioner’s Association (D2CCA) Ron Lenz Defensive Player of the Year, the D2CCA Super Region 4 Defensive Player of the Year and first-team All-American honors from the American Football Coaches Association.

Lucky played a key role in the success of McKendree’s football program over the years. He is the NCAA Division II career leader in tackles for loss and quarterback sacks. He is the co-program career leader in forced fumbles, and the NCAA Division II season leader in sacks. “My accomplishments are humbling,” said Lucky. “It was a goal of mine as soon as I stepped on campus to be an All-American and I never expected for me to get all of these awards.”

Not only did Lucky accomplish that goal, but he greatly exceeded any expectations. Lucky has received offers from multiple indoor teams as well as European teams asking him to continue his football career, but he has not yet decided what he is going to do. “Football has taught me that hard work will get you whatever you like, and if you really want something just go get it. Anything is possible.” Lucky graduated in May with a degree in computer science and was hired as an associate system administrator at the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.