Daniel Carlson fires up another long field goal for Auburn
By Charles Goldberg
AUBURN, Ala. ― Daniel Carlson's ability to hit long-range field goals is attracting national attention.
The Auburn place-kicker was named one of 20 semifinalists Thursday for college football's top kicking honor, the Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker Award. Carlson is the nation's only kicker who has four field goals of 51 or more yards this season, including a career-best 56-yarder in the season-opener and a 52-yarder in Auburn's last game.
His four 50-plus-yard field goals in his last eight games are more than all Auburn kickers in the previous 150 games.
He's hit eight of his last field goal tries, including four in last week's game against Ole Miss, and has hit 14-of-17 field goal tries this season, including 6-of-7 from more than 40 yards. He's also hit 81 consecutive kick conversions.
"Four field goals 50-plus? From a coaching staff standpoint, we have a lot of confidence in him when (the ball) crosses the 30 or 35 yard line," said Auburn coach Gus Malzahn. "He has a high success rate. He's done a great job. If you look at the kickoffs too, he has to be one of the best placekickers in college football. I think at the end of the year, everybody will see him up for all of those awards and I think that will be very warranted."
Thirty-three of Carlson's 40 kickoffs have gone for touchbacks. Auburn has allowed only five kickoff returns, which is the fewest in the nation.
The Lou Groza finalists will be announced Nov. 24. The winner will be honored at the Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker Awards Banquet on Dec. 7 in West Palm Beach, Fla.
Charles Goldberg is a Senior Writer at AuburnTigers.com. Follow him on Twitter: Follow @AUGoldMine