Over the summer of 2009, folks from The Blue-Gray Sky, Classic Ground, Rakes of Mallow, and Her Loyal Sons held a mock draft from a pool of talent consisting of the rosters of the 2009 Notre Dame Fighting Irish and their opponents for that season. As the season approaches, we’re presenting our picks in hopes of sparking some debate and helping the ND fanbase better know the ND team and their opposition.
Player: Brett Swenson
I freaking hate kickers, but if you’ve got a lousy place kicker, you’ve got a huge hole in your game. The rules state that place kickers can actually score points in the game, and thus they can be valuable, particularly when your pool of potential place kickers is relatively weak looking. And so, with the fear of my own “Wide Right” episode haunting my otherwise lofty career, I took a place kicker: Brett Swenson of MSU.
Career: Started his career off on the, ahem, right foot by getting named to the First-Team Freshman All-Americans by the Football Writers of the America. He’s since continued to build an impressive resume. His sophomore year, he managed to compile the 2nd largest point total of all members of the MSU roster. And his junior year, he converted all 38 PAT attempts and went 22 of 28 in field goals. He heads into his senior year atop just about every watch list any magazine or association has created for kickers. Freaking kickers.
Why Him Instead of a Domer: What really sold me weren’t his stats that I had to look up. What sold me is that for the past couple of years, when watching him against ND and in other contests, I’ve come to just expect him to make kicks. It’s been a while since I could say that about ND’s kickers, though I think that could well change this year.
Career Vs. Notre Dame: Made the only FG attempt he, err, attempted in 2006 before his HC went into full meltdown mode. In 2007, he also converted his lone attempt. In 2008, he was far more active, and quite dependable, going 3 for 3 on kicks of 45, 26, and 23 yards. Yeah, bet you forgot MSU only scored 2 TDs in that game too.
Prediction for 2009: Absolutely no reason to doubt the kid, and also no reason to doubt he’ll get his opportunities to compile points seeing as how 114% of MSU’s offense left after last year and he plays for one of the most conservative coaches still left in college football.