PSU news by
Penn State's student blog

Topics

About

Analyzing Penn State Football’s Kicking Situation

We’ve reached the midway point in the season, and Penn State football has an elephant in the room to address — its kicking situation.

Incumbent Tyler Davis is 6-13 on the season (46.2 percent) after only missing two kicks in 2016; there are issues all across the board between blocking, snap execution, and the kick itself — but some changes must be in order ahead of the three biggest games of Penn State’s season. When asked about his kicking unit Wednesday after practice, James Franklin deflected, saying “We’ve established this before.”

I’ll be the first to acknowledge how difficult the kicking game actually is. It becomes the scapegoat for losses, and the first element of the game fans criticize when struggles arrive. I certainly cannot drill a 45-yard field goal against an 11-man rush in a pressure situation. However, if Penn State’s struggles continue in this area, the repercussions would magnify tenfold against teams like Michigan, Ohio State, and Michigan State.

Of all the issues, one consistent remained the same: Six of Davis’ misses have come from the left hash mark.

It seems in the above clip that long snapper Kyle Vasey fires his snap too far inside to the right and too low for holder Billy Fessler to properly handle — thus, resulting in the wide miss to the left.

Protection has been a major issue for Franklin and the kick unit. Errors in blocking responsibility can be seen above vs. Indiana as well as below vs. Iowa. Pay close attention to where the pressure is coming from.

As you can see on both occasions, the defender who blocks the kick came from the right side. If a change were to be made, adjusting gap responsibility along the right side for No. 46 Colin Castagna — or replacing him outright with another blocker — might be a good move to make.

It’s difficult to clearly see where the laces are on each hold, but overall, it seems the best remedy may be to host a bye week competition — and not just for Davis’ position.

Franklin should have Davis compete with freshman Alex Barbir, while Fessler, Vasey, and members of the protection unit compete as well. It’s worth a shot, because if the Nittany Lions aren’t fielding the best possible unit each kick, it may come back to haunt them during the upcoming tough stretch of games.

About the Author

David Abruzzese

David is a senior from Rochester, NY, nestled right in beautiful Western New York. He is majoring in Broadcast Journalism, and as an avid sports fan, he passionately supports the Buffalo Bills and Buffalo Sabres. He is the first Penn Stater from his family, and couldn’t be prouder to represent Penn State University. In his free time, he likes to alpine ski, and play golf. You can follow him on Twitter @abruz11, and can contact him via email at [email protected]

Comments

More by David

So Long, And Goodnight: David Abruzzese’s Senior Column

It’s been a hell of a ride, folks. Senior staffer David Abruzzese rides off into the sunset with his senior column.

Saquon Barkley Mum On NFL Future; Relishes Fiesta Bowl Opportunity

DOTD: Nittany Lion Catches Pass At Fiesta Bowl

Athletics

Shea Moyer Lifts Penn State Women’s Soccer Past West Virginia 1-0

Sophomore midfielder Shea Moyer scored the game-winning goal in the 80th minute of a rainy season opener at Jeffrey Field.

Penn State Women’s Soccer Poised For Strong 2018 Season

Incoming Penn State Track & Field Athlete Kristian Marche Shot To Death In Philadelphia

Former Women’s Gymnastics Coach Files Lawsuit Against Penn State Over Handling Of Abuse Allegations

Men’s Soccer Trio, Reading United Win PDL Eastern Conference Title, Fall Short Of National Championship

Student Life

Student Body President Cody Heaton Welcomes Class of 2022 At Convocation

UPUA President Cody Heaton welcomed the incoming Class of 2022 Saturday evening with an inspiring speech.

Start The Semester Off Right With These Welcome Week Activities

Nike Releases New Penn State Sneakers

Plans Submitted For New KFC In State College

Developers have submitted preliminary land development plans to build a new KFC restaurant at 1780 S. Atherton St. in State College.

Join Onward State: Fall 2018 Application

Onward State is hiring for the fall semester and we’d love to have you join us.

Penn State Officially Welcomes Class Of 2022 At Convocation

The Class of 2022 joined the Penn State family Saturday evening at Convocation.

Be the first to know

  • Top posts and the best Penn State stories

Thank you for subscribing.

Something went wrong.

Assessing Penn State’s Front Seven Following Tuesday’s Medical Retirements

Penn State’s defensive line rotation will be shaken up following Ryan Buchholz’s medical retirement from football, while the coaching staff is letting the linebackers duel it out during camp.

Send this to a friend