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Sports

Levcik awaits big break

| Monday, Sept. 26, 2005

Ford City's Tim Levcik has a lot on his mind these days.

Between trying to finish his degree at Robert Morris University and anticipating what course his three-year football career might take, Levcik remains a busy man.

Levcik, a free agent who has spent the past two seasons with the Philadelphia Soul of the Arena Football League, hasn't started a game with the Soul. But that hasn't stopped him from chasing his dream.

Especially after his two stints with NFL teams ended abruptly.

He signed with the Miami Dolphins as an undrafted rookie from Robert Morris in 2003, and was let go four months later. He was picked up by the Steelers, but released after he injured his knee during an early-morning practice at training camp.

"I've been thinking about that a lot," Levcik said. "I don't want to go out thinking I didn't make it because I hurt my knee. If I don't make it because I am not good enough is one thing. That is why I am still sticking with it. I am waiting for my big break."

Levcik said the Soul and the Colorado Crush have expressed interest in signing him, but his heart is with Philadelphia.

"I want to go back to Philadelphia," he said. "I know a lot of the guys there and it is close to home."

Levcik, 25, must wait until the free-agent signing period begins Saturday.

Joe Linta, Levcik's agent, said he will have a couple of offers when the signing period begins.

"John Elway's team (Colorado) is hot to trot for him," Linta said. "He will go where the opportunity is best for him."

While playing for the Soul, Levcik was a backup role behind Tony Graziani, the most prolific passer in AFL history.

Levcik wants more than the AFL. He wants to get back into the NFL.

"I remember how good it was and I want to get back," Levcik said. "To be that close. To know a few things didn't go your way. I am being patient and want to open some eyes."

If he can't restart his football career, he'll have a college degree. He's finishing up his degree in social sciences.

"That was one of my goals, to get my degree," he said. "I never had a chance to finish up."

Levcik sees his degree as an insurance policy.

"A lot of guys wish they would go back," he said. "I am not getting any younger. It is something to fall back on, if football doesn't work."

If he doesn't make it back to the NFL, he'll leave with many fond memories.

His professional debut occurred against the New Orleans Saints on Aug. 15, 2002. With his family watching, Levcik threw for 61 yards, with five completions and two interceptions, and the Dolphins lost, 24-7. Eight days later, he was released.

But that doesn't dampen his spirits.

"My playing time in Miami was the best experience because it was my first experience," he said. "It was amazing. My family flew down and having them in the stands -- it was amazing."

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