A reminder, this was called "good" by Mike Held
Special teams have been a major question mark for the Orange over the past few years. The occasional shanked punt and missed extra point (but having it ruled as good) have been common for the Orange in recent years, but this group returns a good amount of players, and is focusing on improvement. Kicker:
This is the guy who will be taking the bulk of our field goals. Krautman was the starter last season, making a Big East high 78.9 percent of his kicks. He also converted on all but one (read: two [See: Toledo]) of his extra points. Krautman, a junior, will have the starting job at the beginning of the season. He was selected to the Big East Preseason first team too! Hurray! Rumor has it, however, that he will be relieved of his Kickoff duties at some point, with a freshman; Ryan Norton, coming in to take over that aspect of the foot part of football.
Krautman is one of Syracuseís highest rated players in NCAA 13. So, rock on, rocker. Punter:
With any luck, this is the last time youíll hear this guys name. Nobody talks about the punter until he messes up. Fisher punted most of last year. He started with the USC game, and never looked back. 43 punts, averaging 39.3 yards, is not too shabby, but thereís room for improvement. But, yeah, heís a punter. We shall spend no more time discussing him. Kick Returner:
Rock and Roll, Kobena. Making his second appearance in Orange Outlook, the X receiver looks to be the kick returner for the Orange. He returned last season 45 times, averaging 22.8 yards on every return. Heís quick (all-state in track), which is most definitely useful when returning kicks. I can see a few touchdowns off of the kick from this guy this season. Punt Returner:
Steve Rene (I suppose)
Nobody really emerged as a solid punt returner, so Iíll talk about the incumbent. Rene returned a handful of punts last season. He wasnít particularly effective In that field, averaging a mere 2.2 yards per return. Not really sure what to expect out of this guy. Itís a mystery. It was announced today that Rene will miss the next 3-5 weeks due to injury, so there may be a new punt returner for the first few games. Who knows, Kobena could even add PR
to his list of positions.
Special teams was one of the biggest question marks last season, and will seemingly be another one this year. Games can be won and lost on special teams, so this unit's performance could be a key factor in deciding whether or not the Orange will qualify for a bowl game.
That concludes our 'Orange Outlook' series. We hope that you enjoyed reading them while gaining some knowledge of the Orange squad on a unit-by-unit basis.