PLACEKICKER EARNS HONORS …
By FITSNEWS || The 2014 University of South Carolina football season has been one to forget …
After four years of unprecedented success, head coach Steve Spurrier‘s Gamecocks have come crashing back to reality – reminding recently spoiled fans of the decades of painful mediocrity that preceded their latest run.
Spurrier’s offense hasn’t been bad. Quarterback Dylan Thompson has struggled with accuracy (especially throwing the deep ball) but for the most part the Gamecocks have had no trouble putting points against their opponents. The problem has been a defense that – quite literally – hasn’t stopped anybody all season.
Through nine games, Lorenzo Ward’s unit has surrendered an average of 460 yards an outing (good for No. 104 out of 125 NCAA teams). South Carolina also ranks No. 104 in scoring defense (34.1 points per game) and No. 111 in rushing defense (223.4 yards per game).
That’s beyond abysmal, people.
Anyway … the one real bright spot on the Gamecock football team has been the performance of sophomore placekicker Elliott Fry. The former walk-on has connected on 12 of 15 field goals this season and all 41 of his extra point attempts. In fact dating back to his All-SEC freshman campaign, Fry has hit his last 89 extra points – a school record.
For his efforts, Fry has been named – along with Clemson’s Ammon Lakip – as one of twenty semi-finalists for the Lou Groza Award, presented annually by the Palm Beach Country Sports Commission to the nation’s top placekicker. Three finalists will be announced on November 24, while a winner will be named on December 11.
Now … is it sad South Carolina’s season is so bad we have to focus on the placekicking for good news? Yes. Yes, it is. But that doesn’t detract one bit from Fry’s achievements. In fact if he keeps connecting at his current rate, the 6-foot-0, 165-pound Texas native has a chance to rewrite the Gamecock record book over the next two seasons.