I thought this was a curious quote from Sports Illustrated’s recent Kickin’ It With Carl feature. A student from Alabama wrote a letter asking Edwards if he should leave college to pursue his dream of becoming a driver or mechanic. Edwards’ answer started thoughtful and then veered completely sideways.

Edwards’ response:

"That letter could have come from me in 1998 or 1999. I know exactly how you feel. The reality is, though, unless you have a contract in front of you where somebody says they’re going to pay you to drive race cars, you’re better off, I believe, to race all you can while still going to college and getting that degree."

So far, so good. Here’s where his advice gets a little loose.

"There’s not one NASCAR driver starting a race this weekend other than Ryan Newman who has a college degree, so I think a degree could help you with your career more than you think. And not just as an accomplishment, either — as a personal pursuit of knowledge."

Got that? Out of 43 drivers, one has a degree. So get your degree. Even though it will not help you become a driver.

Kickin’ It With Carl (SI)