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A look at the special teams

Gendreau, DeFatta lead the way

August 9, 2009 · Athletic Communications
HEADLINES
Key Losses: Kickoff specialist Matt King

Key Returner: P David DeFatta owns a punting average of over 40 yards and is one of the best in the conference at placing the opposition inside the 20-yard line. PK Alan Gendreau proved to be very reliable his freshman season and should only get better.

Battle to Watch: The Blue Raiders are blessed with a proven punter in David DeFatta and a steady kicker in Alan Gendreau to go with a good group of returners. The biggest question mark entering fall camp will be who will jump to the forefront as the team's kickoff specialist. The candidates will be DeFatta and Gendreau, so stay tuned to see who comes out on top for this very important job on special teams.

Spring Standout: The Blue Raiders did not do a lot of kicking during the spring, but sophomore Alan Gendreau walked away with the most improved specialist award.

Coach Stockstill on the special teams
"We did not work as much on kicking in the spring so that will be a focal point in August. I have a lot of confidence in both our kickers, and I like our returners. We just have to get better all-around on special teams because it is a part of the game that can decide the outcome and we were not as crisp as I would like to have been last year. Probably as important as any decision we'll make on special teams in August is going to be the kickoff specialist. We have to find some consistency at that position."

PLAYERS
Placekicker
ALAN GENDREAU (Sophomore) - Enjoyed a solid first year by earning Rivals.com and Daily News Journal SBC All-Freshman honors ... Hit 10 of 14 field goals and all 32 extra points to rank second on the team in scoring ... Earned most improved honors in the spring, and coaches feel very confident with his play.

DAVID DEFATTA (r-Senior) - One of the most versatile players on special teams as he is the primary punter, backup placekicker, and backup holder ... Has made 4 of 6 field goals during his career but did not attempt any in 2008.

Punter
DAVID DEFATTA (r-Senior) - One of the top all-around punters in the Sun Belt Conference, who excels at placing kicks inside the 20-yard line ... Owns a 40.9-yard career average, which ranks fifth all-time in school history.

NATHANIEL TOULSON (r-Sophomore) - A walk-on who has never punted in a game but has shown great improvement the past two years ... Possesses a strong leg and averaged 43.0 yards a kick in the spring game.

Snapper
ADAM WADE (r-Junior) - Has made all the snaps for punts, field goals, and extra points the last two years and ranks as one of the most reliable in the Sun Belt Conference ... Earned eight winning grades in 2008.

Holder
PATRICK HONEYCUTT (r-Senior) - Known for being a sure-handed receiver, Honeycutt also excels as the team's holder for extra points and field goals ... This will mark his third straight season as the primary holder.

DAVID DEFATTA (r-Senior) - Has never held in a game but has worked a lot in practice and will be ready if called upon.

Returners
37 David DeFatta (r-Sr., P)
38 Alan Gendreau (So., PK)
17 Patrick Honeycutt (r-Sr., H/WR)
Taylor Ports (r-So., PK)
*Nathaniel Toulson (r-So., P)
48 Adam Wade (r-Jr., SN)
*Non-scholarship

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