the study of the kicking components within sports

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Advice to Aspiring Kickers, 2014, part 1

Our annual Q&A series with college specialists continues with kickers. We asked seniors in the FBS (Football Bowl Subdivision) the following question:
If you could give one piece of advice to aspiring high school kickers, what would it be?
The first half of the responses are:

Sam Ficken, Penn State
"Don't let one game or string of games dictate how you train and how you prepare. Never get to down on yourself and never get too high on yourself. There's always room for improvement."

Michael Hunnicutt, Oklahoma
"Hard work can get you a long way. Also I've found just being a competitor each and every day whether it be with myself or my teammates helps make me a better kicker."

Frankie Velez, Florida
"If you really love football and kicking then never give up. Doesn't matter if your 6th string just keep working and you will get to where you want to in football and in life for that matter."

Carl Salazar, Tulsa
"Get rid of the tee as soon as possible. The longer you use it, the longer the transition to kicking off the ground. I wish I had kicked off the ground my senior year, it would have sped up my development a couple years."

Corey Acosta, Southern Miss
"Find a good coach to work with, work hard to be the best at what you do, and try to find a long snapper and holder that want to be successful and operate well around you. You can only be as successful as the players around you."

Trevor Romaine, Oregon State
"Drop all superstitions you believe in."

Justin Manton, Louisiana-Monroe
"Try not to get too high during the good times or too low during the bad times. Stay focused on getting better each day and control what you can."

Sean Ianno, UTSA
"Quality over quantity. I know it sounds great to go kick a hundred balls and make yourself better but you won't last a whole season training like that. You may be the only kicker at your high school but in college your coaches see you as having no value when you're injured. Less reps, focus on hitting the ball exactly the way you want to on every rep (don't ever just go through the motions in practice) so eventually the way you're kicking will become a habit and when it comes down to you in the game... it's good."

Ty Long, UAB
"One thing that always helped me is realizing you're going to get out what you put in. It takes dedication and doing whatever you can to master your craft. Myself, my punter Hunter Mullins and our snapper Dallas Noriega would spend many nights on our practice field together training late just to make sure we ready months before the season. And just have fun. God gave us this sport and our abilities to glorify him through it so go out there and play and trust your preparation."

Jeremiah Detmer, Todedo
"Get around other kickers. Surround yourself with people who are doing it at a high level, whether that be college kickers, other high school guys, coaches, kicking camps, whatever. The level of competition will make you a better kicker and a better athlete so do not sell yourself short on the importance of learning, watching, and competing with other guys. Also, enjoy the ride!"

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