Texas Tech Football Roster Review | Special Teams

This is DTN's annual review of players, position-by-position, to take a look at the players that I think will be gone (graduating seniors or players possibly leaving the program), guys I know something about (these are players I've heard), guys I know nothing about (these are players that are on the roster who I have no idea who they are) and guys I think are on the way (commits to the program).

PREVIOUS ROSTER REVIEWS | Quarterbacks | Running Backs | Offensive Line | Receivers | Defensive Line | Linebackers | Secondary | Special Teams

GUYS I THINK WILL BE GONE

Number Name Year Ht./Wt. Pos.
85 Matt Williams SR 5-10/170 Placekicker
9 Jonathan LaCour SR 6-1/216 Punter
40 Jeremy Elder SR 5-9/175 Place Kicker

Dear sweet Matt Williams, we will miss your solid place kicking abilities. In some ways, you saved the 2008 season with being able to make an extra point, something I think Texas Tech fans took for granted until another kicker could not kick the football above the cross-bar. Instead of making an extra point an adventure, you made it routine. For Williams' career, he was 33 of 33 in 2008, 60 of 61 in 2009 and 56 of 56 in 2010 for extra points and made 2 of 3 field goals in 2008, 11 of 14 in 2009 and 9 of 11 in 2010. Your rise to fame, from a kid that kicked for rent, to a player that played a big part in this program's success. I tip my hat to you sir.

This is never an easy thing to write, but LaCour was suspended for almost all of the 2009 year and in 2010 he was last in the Big 12 in punting average. Like a lot of inconsistent punters, he could be really good and really bad. I get the feeling that LaCour had to battle through some stuff and could have very easily just walked away from the football program but stuck with it. Plus, I think that Tuberville wanted to redshirt Erxleben, so he afforded Texas Tech that opportunity.

I don't know a thing about Elder, but we wish you well.


GUYS I KNOW SOMETHING ABOUT

Number Name Year Ht./Wt. Pos.
49 Donnie Carona JR 5-11/217 Place Kicker
84 Bradley Hicks RS JR 6-1/169 Place Kicker
43 Ryan Erxleben SO 6-1/192 Punter

This may cause some of you to not sleep well at night. I don't know why I recalled this, but as I was writing this, I seemed to remember something about how there wasn't just a ton of competition at the kicker position.  That Carona is the guy kicking field goals.  The only guy kicking field goals.  Oh my.

Tuberville had mentioned that Carona is really the only guy kicking in the spring:

Senior kicker Donnie Carona followed up a good week with a rough day, missing four of seven field goals.

Carona was wide from 53, 34, 40 and 55 yards and connected from 31, 42 and 44 yards. The week before, he went 2 for 2, making field goals of 52 and 34 yards, and he hit a 37-yarder to end Thursday’s practice.

"He’s kicked well up to this point," Tech coach Tommy Tuberville said. "I guess everybody has a bad day. Kickers don’t get too many. He was just a little off. I thought the wind probably affected him a little bit. Hopefully, he’ll come back and do better."

The other kickers, Brad Hicks and Kramer Fyfe, were limited to extra-point attempts.

I'm so scared baby.

More after the jump.

Just about like every player, I think Carona is a good guy, but son of a gun, he just can't seem to get much height on his field goals and he was squarely in the middle of the conference in kickoffs (6th in the conference and averaging 63.40/punt). As far as the field goals are concerned, I don't have a clue if Carona can do this for an entire year and if he can't I don't really know what the contingency plans are, but there appears to only be two options, Hicks and Fyfe.


GUYS I KNOW NOTHING ABOUT

Number Name Year Ht./Wt. Pos.
84 Bradley Hicks RS JR 6-1/169 Place Kicker
45 Kramer Fyfe FR 5-8/150 Place Kicker

This is where we're going to learn a little something about the players on the roster who you may not have heard of. Rather than doing much homework, I'm going to link to their Texas Tech profile page and let each of you dig around. And to clarify, I only found bios on the players listed below

Up first is Hicks (And yes, I know that he's listed in the guys I know something and nothing about, he's been on the team for 2 years so I know a little bit about him, but I really don't know anything about him, so please enjoy.):

Blinn Community College... two-time NJCAA All-America selection... helped team to conference championship in 2007 with 9-2overall record... perfect on PATs in two seasons and registered 12-of-13 made field goals in 2007 and was 15-of-16 on field goals in 2008... career-long 57-yard field goal against Navarro in 2007... Junior College Head Coach: Brad Franchione

Fyfe:

PERSONAL Kramer Fyfe ... born March 9, 1992 in Austin, Texas ... born to Taylor and Pam Fyfe ... has three brothers ... brother Tanner plays soccer at Houston Baptist ... majoring in mechanical engineering.

Since there's a fairly decent possibility that Fyfe could, at some point, be Texas Tech's kicker, why not post some video of Fyfe from high school. Here's his 2009 highlights:


The thing that stuck out to me was the fact that Fyfe has little to no follow-through on this kicks. I should have prefaced this by saying that I know little to nothing about kicking, but it was just weird to see Fyfe stop right after he kicks the ball. On kickoffs, that's not really an issue. I did find some stats for 2008-2009 and he had 110 kickoffs (that's a lot) and 27 touchbacks which is good for about 24%. Carona knocked kickoffs into the endzone at a 27% rate. These stats also state that Fyfe only had 3 field goals, but in the video posted above, there are more than 3 field goals. I just can't find any additional stats.


GUYS I THINK ARE ON THE WAY

None. But I can't help but think there will be some walk-ons when the summer practices start. The staff needs to add some depth here and it's standard to have some walk-ons. One other note, which is completely meaningless, is that both Fyfe and Erxleben are from Lake Travis.

 


YEAR-BY-YEAR CHART

SENIOR JUNIOR SOPHOMORE FRESHMAN
Donnie Carona (PK)   Ryan Erxleben (P) Kyle Fyfe (PK)
Bradley Hicks (PK)    
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