August 8, 2006

Another day of practice wraps up


As far as position battles go, most of the talk during Longhorn camp has centered on the quarterbacks, for obvious reasons. But there are some other high-impact spots still up for grabs, including the three key positions in the place-kicking game … kicker, holder and snapper.

On Tuesday night, Greg Johnson kicked with the first unit, which included Neale Tweedie as the deep snapper and Jordan Shipley as the holder. The second unit consisted of freshman Hunter Lawrence as the kicker, walk-on quarterback Adair Fragoso holding and Derek Lokey snapping. The third group that worked out featured Kasey Studdard and Matthew McCoy as the center/holder exchange.

The Longhorns figure to find themselves in at least a couple of close games (Mack Brown estimated four nail-biters in his pre-camp press conference), so it's entirely possible that a game or two could be decided in the kicking game.

Right now, it's way too early to tell who will wind up winning the place kicking job, but if Lawrence can continue to kick well and handle the pressure in live action, one would have to think that the staff would love to see him win the starting spot. With Johnson in position to hold down the punting and kick-off duties, having Lawrence on field goals and PATs would allow each guy to rest his legs and focus on the necessary task.

As for the positions of deep snapper and holder, it looks like the Tweedie and Tully Janszen could split the snapping duties while Shipley looks to be in line to hold for the kickers. Mack Brown summed it all up in his post-practice meeting with the media.

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