the study of the kicking components within sports

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Draft Preview: Dustin Hopkins

Draft update 4/27: Buffalo selected Hopkins in the sixth round of the draft. The incumbent kicker on the Bills' roster is Rian Lindell. The team also recently signed Chris Koepplin.

Among the kickers eligible for this year's NFL draft, or signing as an undrafted free agent thereafter, is Florida State's Dustin Hopkins. He ranks in the top two in the majority of the various draft rankings.

Excerpts from Hopkins's profile page on the Seminoles' website:

2012 Senior Season
  • Lou Groza Award Finalist
  • Walter Camp, ESPN, CBSSports, Pro Football Weekly, Athlon Sports, and Capital One Academic All-American (First Team)
  • AP and SI All-American (Second Team)
  • All-ACC (First Team)
  • Set a new NCAA D1 career scoring record for kickers (466 points)
  • established new NCAA, ACC and FSU records with 88 career field goals...his 88th career field goal in the Orange Bowl win over Northern Illinois pushed him past Georgia's Billy Bennett (87, 2000-03)
  • set a new ACC all-time single season scoring mark
  • single-handedly outscored five of FSU's opponents this season (Murray State 15-3, Savannah State 7-0, Wake Forest 10-0, Boston College 15-7 and Duke 12-7)
  • kicked a career-best 56 yard field goal against Duke
  • converted all five of six field goal attempts of 50+ yards
  • has kicked at least one field goal in 46 career games to set the all-time NCAA record, previously held by Blair Walsh of Georgia (45, 2008-11)
2011 Junior Season
  • near-unanimous choice as first team All-ACC kicker
  • selected as one of three finalists for the Lou Groza Award
  • earned CoSIDA Capital One Academic All-America second-team honors on the strength of his 3.82 cumulative GPA
  • scored 10 or more points in six games, including a season-high 14 against Charleston Southern
  • boomed 29 touchbacks as FSU led the ACC in net kickoff with a 48.6 average...had at least one touchback in 12 of 13 games and twice posted a season-best five (Charleston Southern, Clemson)
  • chosen as a finalist for the Danny Wuerffel Trophy, presented to the Division I player who best exemplifies excellence in the community, classroom and on the field
2010 Sophomore Season
  • semifinalist for the Lou Groza Award
  • field goal of 55 yards came as time expired in a 16-13 victory over Clemson, which is the longest walk-off winning kick in ACC history...Hopkins' game-winner - which was also the longest field goal in the ACC in 2010 - came after he missed a potential game-winner a week earlier from 40 yards against North Carolina...earned ACC Specialist of the Week honors for his effort against the Tigers
  • matched his career-high, set in 2010 in the Gator Bowl, with four field goals in the Chick-fil-A Bowl which was a bowl record
  • 41 touchbacks ranked second in the country and was the most by an FSU kicker since All-American Sebastian Janikowski in 1999
2009 Freshman Season
  • won the starting job in preseason competition with James Esco 
  • most prolific freshman campaign by a kicker in program history
  • converted four of five field goal attempts to set an FSU bowl record in the 33-21 Gator Bowl win over West Virginia
  • converted his first collegiate field goal attempt from 52 yards against Miami
High School
  • consensus top-rated kicker in the country coming out of high school
  • two-time Texas 5A All-State selection
  • USA Today first team All-American as a senior
  • participated in the Under Armour All-America game

College Stats:
2012: 25 of 30 (83.3%) FGs; 65 of 66 PATs; 140 points
2011: 22 of 27 (81.5%) FGs; 44 of 44 PATs; 110 points
2010: 22 of 28 (78.6%) FGs; 53 of 53 PATs; 119 points
2009: 19 of 27 (70.4%) FGs; 40 of 44 PATs; 97 points

Back In January, Hopkins discussed football and faith:
"In my mind coming into college, I pictured myself having a lot of good moments, but you don't really think of the bad moments in the future. You try not to picture those things happening because sometimes they'll come to fruition just by thinking something like that. I thought a lot about the good, and not so much about the bad, and it's been very interesting....

Sometimes it's hard to see the big picture when your'e in the moment in those tough times. When you can step back and see all the steps and all the little things and the people who had a part in making you who you are in four year period in college, all I can say is that it's very much a blessing."

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