Red Wolves Going Down Under for a Punter?

Much of the coffee shop talk among Red Wolf fans for the past few months has centered around the question of "who will Arkansas State's starting punter be in 2013?"

Punting was certainly not a strong suit of last year's Sun Belt Conference champions. In fact, despite winning ten games and a second straight league title, plus a bowl win over a Top 25 team, the Red Wolves finished dead last in the nation in that category among FBS teams.

Special Teams Coordinator Kent Riddle appeared on today's AstAteNation Radio program on The Ticket and said that right now, the job appears to be a battle between a hometown boy and a non-traditional Australian student. The hometown boy is, of course, Jonesboro native Luke Ferguson, a sophomore who joined the team last year as a preferred walk-on and handled most of the squad's kick-off duties.

The intriguing element in this story comes in the form of Paul Jones, a 27-year-old walk-on from Australia, who initially took to the Internet in his quest to win the job.

"He contacted us first with some e-mails, and then followed up with some phone calls, and now he's here and performing well," said Riddle.

The 6-foot, 190 pounder has a background in Australian Rules football, according to Riddle.

Riddle said both Ferguson and Jones will get opportunities in Saturday's A-StAte Fanfest Scrimmage, which begins at 1 o'clock at Liberty Bank Stadium. Ferguson will wear #15, while Jones's jersey will wear #4.


Randy Myers is the co-host of AstAteNation Radio. The program airs Monday-Friday from 11-1 on The Ticket 970am/95.3fm and on the web at 953theticket.com.