Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Ryan Succop is the the man...

This week the SEC named Ryan Succop the SEC Special Teams Player of the Week, before you roll your eyes and say "who cares" think about this question for a second - How important Ryan Succop is to the U of SC Gamecocks?

Succop is one of the top returning placekickers in college football. At UGA he was perfect on all three of his field goal attempts, matching his career high, and averaged 40.7 yards on seven punts. His field goals came from 41, 35 and 34 yards out, as he accounted for 10 of Carolina's 16 points in the contest. On his seven punts, two were inside the 20-yard line, with a long of 52 yards. He also had one touchback on five kickoffs, while the Bulldogs average starting position from the kickoffs was its own 30-yard line.

A candidate this year for the Lou Groza Award along with all-conference and all-America consideration. He is a strong-legged junior who handles all three kicking chores: kickoffs, punts and placements for the Gamecocks. We owe the win at UT to him...yes it is a team effort but he is the one who kicked a 50 yarder to win....and overall in his career he has been consistent.

I feel that is the biggest thing - consistent. When Succop lines up for anything within 55 yards I am confident that he will split the up rights. I remember the days when Gamecock football would not kick a FG because they did not trust the kicker to make it and go for it on fourth downs. As a Carolina fan, I am so grateful for Succop and that he is on our sideline. Also Snapper Charles Turner and Holder Tommy Beecher were awesome this past game and let's don't forget how important their roles are, they make Succop look good.
Look at his numbers the last two years, in 2006:

Earned second-team All-SEC honors as selected by the league's coaches... a semi-finalist for the Groza Award... connected on 16-of-20 of his field goal tries... his 80.0 percent accuracy was fourth in the SEC... actually only missed two - a 51-yarder that hit the left upright against Georgia and a 33-yarder against Houston in the Liberty Bowl... other two misses were blocked... was 10-for-11 from inside 47 yards... booted a 50-yarder against Tennessee and a career-high 55-yarder - the second longest in school history - against Vanderbilt... also had a 55-yarder taken off the board against Florida due to a penalty... averaged 42.8 yards per field goal attempt and 40.1 yards per field goal made... connected on 37-of-39 extra points for 85 points overall... his 85 points led the team and was the third-highest single-season total in school history... averaged 6.5 points per game, fourth in the SEC and the third-highest mark among kickers... 29 of 73 kickoff attempts (40 percent) were touchbacks... averaged 43.7 yards per punt, which would have ranked third in the SEC with enough punts to qualify... was the SEC Special Teams Player of the Week for his efforts against Mississippi State when he connected on all three of his field goal attempts (39, 35 and 47 yards) and punted six times for a 48.7 yard average... also averted a certain blocked punt and scrambled 16 yards for a first down, leading to a Carolina score.

2005: Handled the kickoff chores as a true freshman and was the backup placekicker... kicked off 59 times for a 62.3 yard average with 29 touchbacks (49 pct.)... attempted two field goals, missing from 50 yards against UCF and from 46 versus Georgia.

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