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Ranking the Big Ten: Kicker

Many questions remain for what the 2020 college football season will look like, but that doesn't mean we still can't evaluate some of the top players to watch in the Big Ten Conference.

We continue our annual Ranking the Big Ten series today with a look at the league's top returning players at kicker.

Rankings: QB | RB | WR | TE | OT | OG | C | DE | DT | ILB | OLB | CB | S | P

1 - Keith Duncan, Iowa

After going on scholarship in 2019, Iowa's Keith Duncan set an Iowa and Big Ten single-season record by connecting on 29 field goals, including a game-winner to beat Nebraska in Lincoln.

Duncan was named an All-American in 2019 and heads into the season as the unanimous preseason All-Big Ten selection by Athlon, Lindy's and Street & Smith's. Athlon also lists him as a preseason first-team All-American.

Duncan was 29-of-34 on field goals a year ago, including 14-of-18 from 40 to 49 yards. He has not attempted a field goal 50 yards or longer in his career.

2 - Blake Haubeil, Ohio State

In his first season as Ohio State's starting kicker, Blake Haubeil was a third-team All-Big Ten selection, connecting on 13-of-15 field goals.

Haubeil was a perfect 4-for-4 from 40 yards or longer, including connecting on a 55-yard field goal against Northwestern.

Heading into the 2020 season, Athlon list Haubeil a second-team preseason All-Big Ten selection behind Duncan.

3 - J.D. Dellinger, Purdue 

This will be J.D. Dellinger's fourth season serving as Purdue's starting kicker.

Dellinger has connected on 33-of-45 kicks over his three seasons serving as the Boilermaker's primary placekicker.

Dellinger was 13-of-16 this past season, and he placed 40-of-59 kickoffs through the end zone for touchbacks.

Lindy's lists Dellinger as a second-team All-Big Ten preseason selection, while Athlon has him on their third team.

4 - Matt Coghlin, Michigan State 

This will be Matt Coghlin's fourth season serving as Michigan State's starting kicker. Over that time, Coghlin has connected on 55-of-73 field goals and has gone a perfect 91-of-91 on extra points.

Coghlin also has the MSU school record for consecutive kicks made, as he connected on 18 straight field goals. That mark also ranks fourth in Big Ten history.

Lindy's lists Coghlin as a third-team preseason All-Big Ten selection.

5 - James McCourt 

In his first season as Illinois's starting kicker, Jeff McCourt definitely left his mark.

Most remember McCourt for connecting on a 39-yard field goal to help the Fighting Illini upset No. 6 Wisconsin.

However, McCourt may be best known for his leg strength. He led the Big Ten in attempted and made field goal from 50 yards or longer.

McCourt connected on three kicks from 50 yards or longer, including from 57 and 53 yards. His leg strength makes him a real weapon to score anytime Illinois crosses the 40-yard line.