New Golden Gopher football coach PJ Fleck has found ways to put pressure on his special teams players during spring practice this year. Fleck, who admits to being a bit unorthodox in his coaching approach at times, will literally stop practice in the middle of drills and call for the kicking team to hustle onto the field to attempt a long field goal. If the kick is good, practice resumes as normal. If the kick is missed, then the entire team may have to run sprints. Fleck says this is a way of building players who are used to playing under pressure.
Minnesota returns the Big Ten’s best kicker in Emmit Carpenter of Green Bay. Carpenter broke onto the scene last year by making 22 of his 24 field goal attempts, including two of more than 50 yards. He scored the second most points in school history for a single season by accounting for 109 points. Carpenter hit the game-winning boot at home against Rutgers and scored a late field goal for the lead in a game at Penn State.
Carpenter will put his kicking skills on display at the annual spring game, which is set for this Saturday at noon at TCF Bank Stadium.
MNN Sports Director Mike Grimm talked with returning Gopher kicker Emmit Carpenter: