25.Apr.2012 Special Teams — “Wasted” Scholarships?
The Beavers haven't had a good punter since Kyle Loomis. The Alexis Serna and Johnny Hekker experiments costs the Beavs field position, which cost the team games. Some will argue that it's pointless to waste a scholarship on a punter. I guess I am old school in believing special teams (notably field position) is one third of the game, and a great punter is an invaluable weapon. "Waste" the scholarship, please, and sign one less Pankey or Krebs. Good deal, yes?
This story goes back to March 7, 2010, when Mike Riley made the decision that Johnny Hekker was a better punter than future Ray Guy Award, Ryan Allen. Wouldn't it be nice to have him returning this fall? Twas not to be. Now we have Tim McMullen. He sounds decent. A step down from Allen, but a step up from Hekker, but that's from reading biased media reports, so really who knows at this point.
Another huge loss is long snapper Marcus Perry. The guy never made one bad snap in four years. Michael Morovick, a walk-on, talks over. Keep in mind Perry was a scholarship player. It'll be interesting to see the difference between a scholarship long snapper and a walk-on.
So, my question to you: are a punter and long snapper truly "wasted" scholarships as the apologists say, or are these positions just as valuable (if not more so) than the 5th string LB who uses up these potential scholarships, yet never plays a down? And yes, Hekker was on scholarship eventually, but as I noted in that March 7th, 2010 article, Riley blatantly awarded the wrong guy. So maybe I should rephrase: is awarding a good punter or long snapper a wasted scholarship?