the study of the kicking components within sports

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Utah Utes Kicker, Punter & Snapper News


April 25, 2015 - spring game
"Andy Phillips finished the game with two made field goals for the white team, with his longest a 53-yard attempt in the first half." - KSL

November 15, 2014 - punter Tom Hackett key in 20-17 win over Stanford
"Hackett was Utah’s special-teams star, with Andy Phillips not attempting any field goals and Kaelin Clay unable to make any big plays in the return game. Hackett punted nine times for a 44.7-yard average, which only begins to tell his story. Five of his punts forced Stanford to take possession inside its 10-yard line. The Cardinal never scored on any of those drives, despite some advancement, so Hackett clearly played a major role in the defense’s success." - Salt Lake Tribune

October 31, 2014 - punter Mitch Wishnowsky commits
"Wishnowsky, a 22-year-old freshman at Santa Barbara City College, plans to enroll at Utah in January 2016 and take over punting duties. Hailing from Perth in Western Australia, Wishnowsky said he committed to the U. last week after visiting with Tom Hackett and the coaching staff. 'Tom speaks highly of the coaches and the things they do on special teams,' Wishnowsky said. 'I like how Tom rolls out, and all the different sort of punts he gets to do. Being the No. 1 special teams in the nation, I hope Utah can stay that way when I come'.... Through seven games, SBCC is 6-1. Wishnowsky is averaging only 37.4 yards per punt, but he's placed 17 of his 34 punts within the 20 yard line." - Salt Lake Tribune

October 22, 2014 - punter Tom Hackett a weapon
"Hackett ranks second in the country in punting average, at 48 yards per game, but that isn’t the best measure of his impact. Hackett has punted 37 times this season; only nine of them have even been returnable — for a total of 23 yards, or 2.6 yards per return. The Utes lead the nation in net punting (45.2 yards), which measures the total yards a punt gains, including the return. Hackett has put 11 punts inside the 10-yard line this season, four inside the 5. " - Desert News

October 4, 2014 - Andy Phillips kicks game winner over UCLA
It’s hard to get more suspenseful than an Andy Phillips field goal with 34 seconds left, leading Utah to a 30-28 win over UCLA.... Phillips kicked three field goals, including the game-winner with 34 seconds left. Considering the Utes have never won more than four conference games in a year, it was a good time on Saturday to resort to summoning a curse from the netherworld. Or to simply try some things for good luck. Phillips, for one, wouldn’t be above a conjuring or two. 'I’m a little superstitious — starting the night before the game,' Phillips said this week. He and punter Hackett, who room together on the road, have their rituals. Phillips, for example, always makes sure he sleeps in the bed closest to the wall; Hackett hibernates nearest the window. Hackett also sleeps with a football — strange for a player who grew up in Australia and didn’t know the rules of football until a few years ago. Meanwhile, Phillips says that for the pregame meal, he always chooses red pasta over white. 'I just don’t trust the white,' he said this week. 'Sometimes it’s good, but I’m like, ‘Nope, can’t do that'." - Deseret News

August 20, 2014 - hurry-up
"At the end of practice, the special teams unit executed some hurry-up field goal drills. Place kicker Andy Phillips nailed a 46-yard field goal during the hurry-up segment. 'We were just working on a situation,' coach Kyle Whittingham said. 'You never want to rush your kicker unless the clock is a factor. Every once in a while, we'll send the field goal unit out simulating when we have no timeouts, the clock is running and it's fourth down so we can't spike the ball to stop it. That situation may very well come up this year so we have worked that drill probably six or seven times during fall camp'." - Block U

August 5, 2014 - summer specialists
"The kicking and punting game should be very good again this season. Returning sophomore kicker Andy Phillips will look to continue his stellar play from last season. Phillips is an All American candidate and one of the most reliable kickers in the country. The punting game will also boast an All American candidate in returning junior punter Tom Hackett. Hackett was first team All Pac 12 last season and is one of the best punters in the country. Sophomore Chase Dominguez will again handle all the snapping duties this season. Dominguez played very well as a true freshman last season." - Torn By Sports

April 15, 2014 - kicker Chayden Johnston commits
"The 6-foot junior gave a verbal commitment to Utah head coach Kyle Whittingham after Tuesday’s practice at Rice-Eccles Stadium. 'Utah has always been my No. 1 choice,' Johnston said. 'I figured, why wait?' Johnston spent Tuesday’s practice on the sideline with Utah's kicking corps, including ski-racer-turned-kicker Andy Phillips.... Johnston is a first-team all-state winner and one of the top rated prep kickers in the country. He said his longest field goal in a game is 51 yards, while his longest in practice is 68 yards.... Johnston was offered a scholarship after Utah’s Junior Day a couple of weeks ago. He plans to serve a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints right after high school so he probably won’t get to play with Phillips, who is just finishing his freshman year at the U." - Deseret News

April 12, 2014 - second spring scrimmage kicking
"Kicker Andy Phillips was also pleased with how things went in the scrimmage. The sophomore, who made a 41-yard kick early in the gathering, did a backflip after making a 59-yard field goal. 'He drilled it. That was a heck of a kick,' Whittingham said. 'I’m not sure about the backflip after. Pretty impressive, but we don’t want much of that going on'.” - Deseret News

April 4, 2014 - kicker Andy Phillips goes long
"Andy Phillips made two field goals that exceeded his career long of 51 yards in Friday afternoon's spring scrimmage at Rice-Eccles Stadium. The sophomore All-America candidate connected on kicks from 52 and 53 yards out. 'That was great to see. He’s in a groove right now,' said Utah coach Kyle Whittingham. 'He works hard. He’s been very consistent all throughout spring and his leg is stronger this year'." - Deseret News

April 4, 2014 - coaching, kicking & golf
Once upon a time, Kyle Whittingham was a kicker. Or, he clarified, a 'hacker'. 'I was the best of the worst' at Provo High, said Utah’s head coach and special teams coordinator. Not easily confused with, say, Tom Dempsey, he estimates his range at 'about 12 yards'. ]A lot of fakes. A lot of going for it on fourth down'. And so when Whittingham coaches honorable mention All-Pac 12 kicker Andy Phillips, he often talks golf — where the onetime linebacker may actually have a leg up: Whittingham has gone nine against Phillips and beaten him by three strokes, although Phillips said it’s 'to be continued'. 'That’s probably where we’ve connected most,' Phillips said. 'Kicking’s a lot like golfing. Leg swing, golf swing, mentally — it’s crazy how much they overlap'."- The Salt Lake Tribune

March 27, 2014 - kicker Andy Phillips
"New Utah special teams coach Kyle Whittingham asked his kicker how far the offense needed to advance for a field goal. 'Coach, I’m good from 57.' Granted, it was indoors at Spence Eccles Field House and the Utes will be in the elements for all 12 regular season games in 2014, but sophomore Andy Phillips drilled a 52-yarder to end practice Thursday and 'he probably would have hit 57,' Whittingham said. In the honorable mention All-Pac 12 Phillips, Whittingham inherits a 'proven commodity' who, ironically, had never played in a football game until last August." - The Salt Lake Tribune

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