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Friday, March 27, 2015

Washington Huskies Kicker, Punter & Snapper News

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March 26, 2015 - spring specialists
"P Korey Durkee, sr., PK Cameron Van Winkle, jr., PK Mitch Johnson, jr., P/PK Tristan Vizcaino, so., LS Ryan Masel, sr., LS Luke Hutchison, so.
Outlook: A solid, veteran group here. Van Winkle was excellent in his first season as the placekicker, converting 20 of 24 field-goal attempts with a long of 51 yards. Durkee was solid in his transformation as a mostly rugby-style kicker, and Vizcaino handled most of the kickoffs. Expect Vizcaino to push both of the incumbents through fall camp." - Seattle Times

February 4, 2015 - long snapper A.J. Carty signs
"Santa Ana, Calif. (Servite) - PrepStar All-Region selection ... played two seasons on the varsity as an offensive lineman, but was better known as a long snapper prospect ... listed as a five-star recruit and the No. 3 long snapper in the nation by Rubio Long Snapping ... was the top performer at the Rubio Long Snapping Fall Camp in 2014 ... one of three finalists for the 2014 Chris Rubio Award, given to the nation’s top high school long snapper ... rated the No. 6 long snapper in America by ESPN." - Huskies

November 26, 2014 - kicker Cameron Van Winkle
"Chris Petersen is probably joking when he says Cameron Van Winkle, the Washington Huskies’ sophomore kicker, plays a part in UW’s red-zone struggles. Van Winkle has made 19 of his 22 field-goal attempts this season, and leads all Pac-12 Conference kickers in field goals-made percentage at 86.4. His consistency makes him a valuable option in the red zone, where the Huskies have converted just 21 of their 41 chances into touchdowns. Van Winkle is 15 for 17 on field-goal tries in the red zone. 'You might have just hit on some of our red-zone problems — we don’t go for it enough because we feel confident with Cam,' Petersen said with a smile. 'He’s done a great job'." - The News Tribune
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October 22, 2014 - punter Korey Durkee
"Durkee is averaging 42 yards a punt this year for the Huskies, up from his 36.9 mark as a freshman. 'Consistency is something I worked on in the offseason,' Durkee said. 'With the strength staff, getting my legs strong, and having a nice and smooth swing.' The most important aspect of punting is leg speed, combined with proper technique, Durkee said. His work in the weight room has paid off this season. Durkee’s breakout game came against the Stanford Cardinal, in which he punted seven times for a 51.7-yard average, the seventh-best single game average in UW history. He had a long punt of 65 yards." - Peninsula Gateway

August 27, 2014 - kicker Cameron Van Winkle
"If that trend of successful kickers is to continue, it will be riding on the right leg of Cameron Van Winkle. A sophomore from Fall City, Wash., Van Winkle emerged from a three-way battle with Mitch Johnson and Tristan Vizcaino, and he will get the first field goal attempt of the season as a result. Van Winkle said that the competition had a major impact for him over the course of the fall. 'It’s a good competition,' Van Winkle said. 'When you have competition, you just grow and become better and better and better. If I would have been just by myself, I wouldn’t have anyone pushing me, which is finally nice in college, to have someone pushing myself, which I didn’t have in high school'.... While Van Winkle will be the Huskies’ main field goal kicker, at least at the beginning of the season, the UW coaching staff will not be as reliant on him as the last staff was on Travis Coons. Van Winkle will likely take the majority of kickoffs as well as field goals, but Tristan Vizcaino will occasionally spell him on kickoffs, and Korey Durkee looks to have won the punting job heading into Saturday’s opener in Hawaii." - The Daily

August 20, 2014 - Cameron Van Winkle & Korey Durkee
"As it stands now, sophomore Cameron Van Winkle has a strong hold on the place-kicking job, and will kick off some, too. UW’s ideal scenario, special-teams coordinator Jeff Choate said, would be to have freshman Tristan Vizcaino help handle kickoffs, especially in high-scoring games. And junior Korey Durkee has punted the ball well enough throughout fall camp to lay claim to that position, with Vizcaino providing competition behind him. 'For us to be able to take a little bit off the plate of each one of those guys and let them focus on their specialty, I think that’s going to be beneficial for us this season,' Choate said.... Van Winkle was able to practice in spring, though coaches took it easy on him to ensure a full recovery. Then he emerged during training camp as the Huskies’ best field-goal kicker. 'He’s been very consistent, especially over the last week, week and a half of practice, coming off the back (injury),' Choate said. 'He’s had really no issues with that at all'.... Durkee hasn’t punted since his freshman season in 2012, but his leg strength shouldn’t be an issue; he boomed a kick during last week’s open scrimmage that he estimated traveled 75 yards in the air. Petersen’s teams have often implemented unique punting methods, such as rugby-style kicks on the move, and that’s something Durkee said he began working on last season. And he said he’s starting to develop a good on-field rapport with Van Winkle as the team’s holder for field goals and PATs. Durkee did that last year, too." - Bellingham Herald
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August 9, 2014 - specialist competitions
"Three players appear to be vying for place-kicking duties. The only player fans are likely to recognize by name is sophomore Cameron Van Winkle of Mount Si High School in Snoqualmie. He was pretty highly-touted as a recruit (as far as kickers go, anyway) and many expected him to push Coons last season in a camp competition that never appeared particularly close. Mitch Johnson is a sophomore from Bellevue who recently transferred over from UCLA. To be honest, I don't know much about his kicking. I do know that starting UCLA kicker Ka'imi Fairbairn is believed to have NFL potential, so Johnson could be a talented kicker who didn't have a realistic shot at earning a starting role with the Bruins. He could also be a fringe player. Finally, Tristan Vizcaino is a freshman listed at both place-kicker and punter. He was also a high-profile recruit; Scout named him the top specialist in California for his class....  When Korey Durkee punted as a freshman in 2012, he averaged 36.9 yards per punt. He's had two years to improve, but the fact that he couldn't edge out Coons last year was discouraging. The only other player listed as a punter on the roster is Tristan Vizcaino, the aforementioned freshman who is also competing as a place-kicker." - UW Dawg Pound

July 30, 2014 - summer specialists
"Kickoff, place kicking, and punting duties will all be up for grabs come fall camp with the departure of do-it-all kicking specialist Travis Coons. Cameron Van Winkle looks to be the favorite for kickoff duties, having handled it through the first five games of the season before injuring himself. Van Winkle will have some competition for the role of place kicker with the addition of highly touted incoming freshman Tristan Vizcaino. Vizcaino also comes in as an established punter and will contend for punting duties with junior Korey Durkee. Durkee has experience at the position, getting reps as a freshman against San Diego State and LSU before relinquishing the duties to Coons." - isportsweb

June 28, 2014 - long snapper AJ Carty commits
"AJ Carty, a long snapper from Servite High in Anaheim, Calif., announced today on Twitter his verbal commitment to Washington. Carty, listed at 6 feet 3, 235 pounds, is rated by Chris Rubio Long Snapping as a five-star recruit and the No. 3 overall long snapper for the Class of 2015." - Seattle Times

April 18, 2014 - spring specialists
"Cameron Van Winkle, coming off back surgery, has been steady in his return. On Thursday night, he made all of his field-goal attempts: from 30, 34, 33 and 37 yards. … Mitch Johnson, a Bellevue High product, transferred from UCLA to start the spring term. … Punting drills have been limited, but Korey Durkee has been just fine when given opportunities. At Boise State, Chris Petersen said he did some unusual things in the punting game – rugby style, namely – and that will likely continue here. Tristan Vizcaino (6-2, 195), a kicker and punter from Chino Hills, Calif., signed with UW in February." - Seattle Times

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