When Riley Dellinger was eight years old he began kicking in his front yard where he would set the ball on the tee and aim to kick over the power line in the front yard. Once he mastered the power line, he moved to punting the ball up into the pine tree that stood tall in his front yard.
Now as a junior at Deep Creek High School (Chesapeake, Va) Dellinger made 100-percent of his extra points in the past two seasons, setting a school record. The combo kicker also set a record at Deep Creek for longest punt ever recorded of 63 yards.
The first team all-conference punter and second team kicker has been ranked as the top combo kicker in his grade for the Hammer Kicking Academy Top 40. Hammer Kicking Academy is an invite only camp where top specialists from around the country go head-to-head in competitions led by former collegiate and professional specialists.
Being a specialist is something that Dellinger has been raised to do in a long family history in the business. His father, Eric Dellinger, going to Virginia Tech, his cousin kicked at Christopher Newport and also has a cousin that is currently is at Old Dominion.
The 6-foot, 160-pound kicker visited East Carolina last month when the Pirates hosted USF earlier this month and although Pirates fell to the Bulls, Dellinger came away with a lot of positives.
“I really like their program,” Dellinger explained. “I liked how they talked to me about the family atmosphere, I know that’s really important. I like their new weight room. I really like the stadium, I liked the atmosphere of it all and the giant cannon that went off every time they scored.”
Dellinger said that his current interest in ECU is a nine out of ten, on a high ten-point scale and that and offer would be giant and he would most likely accept it.
Along with visiting and talking with ECU, the junior is also talking with Virginia and Virginia Tech. Dellinger has visited Virginia and plans on visiting Virginia Tech in the coming year.
“Personally I like the recruiting process, I don’t feel like it’s been too stressful. I know that it can be stressful at some points but I really like it.”
When Dellinger looks at all of his options, he has a list of the top factors he will take into consideration to choose the best fit for himself. The feeling around the program is his top factor but the school having his major (Kinesiology) is also up there. The facilities and overall atmosphere are also high on his list.
“It means a whole lot to me,” Dellinger said. “I’m really excited to have this opportunity and I’m excited to bring my abilities to a school and continuing the tradition of great specialists in my family.”