September 14th, 2010
If you are fortunate to kick more than five field goals in one season at the high school level, consider yourself lucky and buy a lottery ticket. For most of your high school career you have been the starting kicker, either you worked really hard or in other instances the football team needed a kicker and you were the only that would volunteer for such a position. You either have a very strong leg or a good enough leg that you kick better than most of you opposing teams kickers. Almost every day your teammates give you complements and think you are god with your foot and you can do not wrong. Even you head coach tells you about how you should be kicking at the Division I level and kick his alma mater, which normally is a school such as Notre Dame.
You feel pretty comfortable, as there is no other kicker on your team that can even come close to your consistency and power. Mom and Dad buy kicking DVD’s and provide you tutors and tell you are an amazing son and even better kicker.
You start to wonder, “How good am I? Who should I believe?”
Start by doing your research, just as your science teacher told you. Gather more information, and today’s technological age its not that hard. First look at some kicking video on Youtube, or Vimeo, check out highlight tapes of some of the best kickers in your area or in the country. Compare yourself, how do you stack up. Normally if you are kicker and have highlight tape you want to play college and at least doing a decent job for you team. Many of them will post them, in order for college coaches to review them.
Secondly, find a former professional kicker or kicking academy in or around you area. (They is one in almost every major city in the US) Maybe get a private lesson or attend of their classes or camps, see how you stack up against the better specialists. Then ask for their honest opinion, if this coach or former athlete has been in business for than 10 years they will have a good idea what it takes to make it to the next level and how other kickers are performing in your area.
Thirdly, call or make contact with a college special teams coach. Either the coach can be locally (often times they may have all ready seen you kick and made their evaluation) You can send an email or call them –be persistent. Most College coaches don’t really respect the kicking game and don’t want to take the time to talk to high school kicker unless they are highly recruiting them.
Bottom line, you need an honest assessment – sometimes it may not come from a private kicking coach, as they will try to tell you that you are good and need their services to get to college. (I know way to many of those) Do your research!
John Matich, MA, Owner, The Kicking System
* Kicker / San Diego Shockwave (ALL-NIFL) 2007
* Kicker / Omaha Beef 2010 (IFL)
* Free Agent Signee of the Minnesota Viking (2001)
* MA in Sports Management from the University of San Francisco (2007)
* Awarded a football scholarship for placekicking at Boston College (1995-1999)
* 2nd place All-Time Scoring at Boston College
* Camp Director for the SDSU Kicking Camp (2007,2008)
* Kicking Coach to over 15 San Diego Schools and JUCO’s
* Native San Diegan and former kicking standout from Mira Mesa High School (1995)
* AFCA Member since 2006
* Coach for the NFL Youth Program JPD, Junior Player Development
* Speaker for the Frank Glazer Clinics & FCPGA
* Speaker for Irvine Sports Clinic – National Football Foundation (2008)
* Coach for the Champion Sports Academy (San Diego Hall of Champions) & USA Football Coach School
* Scout.com & Rivals.com evaluator
* Placed over 30 tduents to Ivy League, Pac-10, ACC and DI programs
* Kicking Director of Darren Sproles Football Camp (2009)
* Kicking Director of Eugene Amano Football Camp (2009)