Sounds Like Changes Coming at Place Kicker

After Brandon Walker started the season just 1 for 7 on field goal attempts, it should come as no surprise that Charlie Weis and Brian Polian are considering using junior Ryan Burkhart for field goals moving forward.

Here are a couple questions from Weis’s press conference addressing the situation.

Q. We asked you in the heat of the battle about the kicking situation last night. In the light of day today, where can you go with that?
COACH WEIS: Well, I mean, the first thing is we had this kickoff a couple weeks ago, let Ryan (Burkhart) go against him (Brandon Walker). You know, Ryan didn’t have a good week kicking field goals that week.
But I think we definitely have to explore Ryan kicking field goals. We definitely have to explore that because in Brandon’s case, it’s not obviously a case of being able to kick it high enough or far enough. When you’re 1 out of 7 kicking field goals, it just doesn’t cut it. You only can hang so long on this. We’re fortunate it hasn’t cost us more than what it’s cost us already.

Q. In terms of Brandon, the one thing about all his kicks is they’re all long. Is there any chance he’s maybe fit to be the kickoff guy?
COACH WEIS: We actually had that conversation during the fourth quarter yesterday. I don’t know if you saw the conversation I had with (special teams coordinator) Brian (Polian), because you guys usually don’t miss too much. After the second miss, I called Brian over, I said calmly, let’s start talking about the things we’re talking about now. What I don’t want to do is I don’t want to overload one guy to put both on him.
I would think that if Ryan ended up kicking field goals, I would think that Brandon would end up kicking off. I would think that would be the direction we’d end up going.

It doesn’t take an interpreter to figure out that Burkhart will lkely get his first chance to kick field goals next week.  Walker’s been off target all season and right now the only thing that Burkhart can do that would be worse would be to kick line drives that get blocked.  Short of that, there is really not a whole lot Burkhart can do any wose so why not give him the chance?

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  1. I hear that Joe, it baffles me how we can be so bad at place kicking for so long. Part of the current problem stems from Weis’s recruiting strategy in that first full class. I’m not saying we definitely would have had him, but we at least had a great shot at Kai Forbath before Weis jumped the gun and offered Burkhart.

    It was a major error by Weis because Burkhart would have likely accepted a scholarship to ND if it was offered the day before Signing Day. Weis could have waited for Forbath. If we had Forbath right now…

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