Sunday, November 2, 2008

Disney will be calling Texas Tech soon......

By Ben Chew

When you think of college football in the year of 2008, there are probably many storylines to touch on: from Michigan going into the tank, Boise State making yet another run at a BCS bowl bid, and the rebirth of Alabama football.

However, you will probably be finding those stories in the fact-sheets or the record books, but there is one story that has flown under the radar of this college football season and it’s a story about a kicker.

Most of you are probably asking right now: why should I care about a kicker? This story might be one for the ages. While the battle of Texas Tech vs. Texas focused on the quarterback play of Graham Harrell and Colt McCoy. Texas Tech’s kicker might have stolen the show; his name is Matt Williams.

Matt Williams was not listed on a depth chart or even a red-shirt list for the Texas Tech Red Raiders before the season. Also he didn’t transfer from another school. No, Matt’s only affiliation with the team before now was that he was a student at Texas Tech.

Yes, he was a student at Texas Tech. Here is how the story goes. Texas Tech’s kicking game before Matt was poor. (Incumbent kicker Donnie Carona, who kicked before Matt, was 3 for 8 from FG land including some missed extra points). Now obviously, Texas Tech like many schools, hold field goal contests, and Matt was randomly selected to kick a 30-yard field goal during their game against Massachusetts to win a free month’s rent.

Now, Matt had kicked in high school and went to Division II Tarleton State for football, but didn’t kick for their football team. However, that means he hadn’t kicked a field goal for at least two years. Matt drained the field goal from thirty yards and won the free month’s rent. Ironically, Texas Tech head coach Mike Leach saw him hit the field goal and sent someone to go after Matt to ask him to walk-on. Mike Leach was eventually at his wits end with the kicking game and decided to use Matt in-game against Kansas where he went for 9 for 9 on extra points.

Matt hit his first field goal from 29 yards in the game against the Texas Longhorns and both of his field goals were the difference in the Texas Tech upset of Texas. Sometimes, there is such a thing as creative justice, and in the end, the 12th man for the Texas Tech Red Raiders was a kicker who in the end is truly a “fan.”

1 comment:

Rick Morris said...


What a great story! I didn't know any of this and I caught the game last night only fleetingly, so I missed any mention they made of it. This was a great column.