Gopher Placekicker Wins Big Ten Honor
Minneapolis,MN (Gophersports.com) - For the second time this season Emmit Carpenter has been named the Big Ten Special Teams Player of the Week. He was also named a Lou Groza Star of the Week for the first time this season, the Palm Beach County Sports Commission announced Monday.
Carpenter made three field goals against Purdue, which included kicks from 53 and 52 yards (third and tied for fourth longest field goals outside for a Minnesota kicker). The 53-yarder is a career high and if tied for the seventh-longest in program history and is the longest since Joel Monroe’s 54-yarder at Iowa in 2007.
The only other kicker in program history to hit two 50-yarders in a game was Adam Bailey when he connected from 52 and 50 yards versus Penn State in 1997. Carpenter is just the second FBS kicker this season with two or more 50-yard field goals in a game. Zane Gonzalez of Arizona State has accomplished the feat twice.
The Lou Groza Award semifinalist never attempted a field goal before this season, but is now 16-of-18 (16 made is most in B1G this year and tied for seventh most in team history in a single season). The sophomore has not had many chip shots. His shortest kick was from 24 yards and he has made three from 28 yards. His other 12 field goals have been 35 yards or greater and seven of his field goals have been 42 yards or greater. In addition to distance, Carpenter has been put in pressure situations as well. Seven of his field goals have come at the end of a half, game or in overtime, which included a game-winning 28-yarder with six seconds left against Rutgers.
The Gophers have now won three Big Ten weekly awards. Rodney Smith was named the Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week after his performance against Rutgers. Carpenter also won the Special Teams Player fo the Week accolade after his performance at Penn State.