the study of the kicking components within sports

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Draft Preview: Carey Spear

Among the kickers eligible for this year's NFL draft, or signing as an undrafted free agent thereafter, is Vanderbilt's Carey Spear. He ranks in the top ten in several of the various draft rankings.

Excerpts from Spear's profile page on the Commodores' website:

2013 Senior Season
  • One of only three players in team history named as three-time team captain
  • became first Vanderbilt player ever included on Allstate-American Football Coaches Association Good Works squad
  • Contributed two field goals and a TD-saving kick return tackle in 41-24 victory over Houston in BBVA Compass Bowl
  • Capped regular season by kicking 38-yard FG in closing seconds to clinch comeback win over Wake Forest... The three-FG performance against Wake Forest earned Spear SEC co-Special Teams Player of the Week honors
  • 54-yarder at South Carolina was career long and tied for third longest in team history
  • Greatly improved his distance on kickoffs - 46 of 66 kicks resulted in touchbacks... Also contributed three tackles on kickoff coverage.
2012 Junior Season
  • Second Team All-SEC (AP)
  • His 20 made field goals sets a new single-season team record
  • was perfect inside 43 yards on the season, hitting 14-of-14 field goals
  • Kicked a career-long 52 yard field goal in regular season finale victory at Wake Forest to become the first Commodore to kick a 50-plus yard field goal since Bryant Hahnfeldt in 2006... Then added a 50-yard field goal later in the Wake game
  • Twice named as a SEC Special Teams Player of the Week
  • Had a total of 63 kickoffs for 3,847 yards (61.1 average per kick) and 22 touchbacks
  • Also known for his big hits on kickoff returns, as he has tallied three tackles on the season
2011 Sophomore Season
  • Spear was 'Dores' placekicker duties for first eight games and served as kickoff specialist throughout the season
  • Kicked off 64 times witht ten touchbacks
  • The exuberant kicker made 11 special teams tackles, including nine solo stops, many of which were spectacular collisions
2010 Freshman Season
  • One of 13 true freshmen to see action, Spear served as the team's primary kickoff specialist for the season
  • Nearly 40 percent of Spear's kicks were not returned by opposing teams... Spear's ability to kick high and deep limited opposing returners to a 20.7-yard average
  • Also credited with a pair of coverage tackles.
High School
  • Four-year letterwinner... Three-year starter as kicker, also started at punter as senior
  • Ranked among nation's leading kickers by several services
  • As senior, hit 13 of 21 FGs, including state-record tying 61-yarder, as senior; 45 of 66 kickoffs resulted in touchbacks... Made seven FGs of 45 yards or longer in 2009
  • As junior, hit 14 of 20 FGs, with long of 51 yards
  • 39-yard punting average as senior
  • Two-time first team All-State; MaxPreps second team All-American as senior
  • Four-year soccer letter winner, earning second team All-State honors as senior

College Stats:
2013: 15 of 19 (78.9%) FGs; 48 of 48 PATs; 93 points
2012: 20 of 24 (83.3%) FGs; 27 of 27 PATs; 87 points
2011: 4 of 7 (57.1%) FGs; 26 of 27 PATs; 38 points

Last September, Spear discussed his college career and possible future pro career:
“(Playing football) has been a blessing since the first day I got on campus. Vanderbilt has shaped me into a better student, better athlete and a better person. I owe so much to my teammates and coaches, teachers and friends; I would not be the same person without them....

Obviously [playing in NFL] would be a blessing — a dream come true, but I’m just focused on this season and doing what I can to help the team.”

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