Perhaps a Name Change is in Order

LSU coach Les Miles was genuinely surprised last Saturday night when asked to comment about the fact that kicker Colt David had set a school record against the Rebels.

"Did he?" Miles asked when made aware of David's accomplishment. "So, my sports information director didn't tell me that as I walked in here."

After adding his forty-ninth and fiftieth point after touchdown conversions to his 2007 résumé in the first half, David made it 51 early in the third quarter. With 4:23 left in the opening period of the second half, he capped a seven-play, 31-yard drive when he connected on a 48-yard field goal attempt. The boot was his twentieth of the season, moving him past David Browndyke, who set the mark at 19 back in 1988. David's name now sits atop the list, which also includes the names John Corbello, Pedro Suarez, Andre LeFleur, Juan Betanzos, and Mike Conway.

A mere two years ago when he appeared on the scene in Baton Rouge from Grapevine, Tex., David connected on 4-of-5 field goal attempts., all between 20 and 39 yards. He also hit 45-of-46 PATs. Definitely not bad for a true freshman and, in fact, the biggest issue or concern anyone had with David that first year was his name. For awhile, his name was translated into capital city Cajun as "Da-Veed" by many a fan and broadcaster alike.

Now, David is simply "Day-Vid," and he is making what he does look ordinary.

Following his record-setting kick against Ole Miss, David was called upon again. This time, he was asked to nail a 43-yard field goal to end a 12-play, 66-yard drive early in the fourth quarter. He did so with room to spare.

Lost in the shuffle may be the fact that other than Keiland Williams' 10-yard touchdown with 10:10 to go in the third quarter, David's two field goals accounted for all of the Tigers scoring until the 3:44 mark of the fourth quarter. Minus those six points, LSU's lead after Ole Miss quarterback Brent Schaeffer's 38-yard touchdown run with 9:11 remaining in the game would have only been 21-17.

"He's a guy that we count on," Miles said of David. "He's come through. He makes big kicks. I can tell you, I still think his leg is big as we need it to be. I think we could back him up a little bit further to see if we can hit it. I'm glad the wind died out as this game went on, because it started out a little more breezy. I don't know that we would have taken some of those kicks, but it gave us great kicking weather and Colt David's a guy that you can count on to do that."

With three games to play, David has made 21-of-26 field goal attempts and has converted on 53-of-53 PAT attempts. Both are career highs and, combined with his first two seasons, the points are adding up to probably place him at the top of a few other lists.

As he continues along, David is simply adding to what is now a season-record 241 points by kicking. The previous mark was 85 points, held by Corbello. Browndyke, for his career, scored 292 points (61 field goals and 109 PATs). Browndyke is at the top of the list.

David has a very slim chance of surpassing Browndyke's mark this year, which would place him third overall on LSU's career-scoring list. Once again, that's overall, not just among kickers. In other words, the list would read Kevin Faulk (318), Dalton Hilliard (302), and then Colt David if that would indeed come to pass.

There's also one little caveat to consider – David is only a junior.

By the time the first third of the 2008 season is over for the Tigers, David will likely have his named placed above two of the greatest players to ever wear purple and gold for LSU. Faulk, of course, is still winning Super Bowls with the NFL's New England Patriots, and Hilliard is widely considered one of the best running backs that ever played for the New Orleans Saints. Perhaps David has a future NFL career ahead as well.

For now, however, it's still 2007. David, and the Tigers, are in the middle of a run for the national championship; ranked No. 1 in the nation with just one loss in a year where there doesn't seem to be any consensus as to who the winner of the Heisman Trophy should be.

Fans and LSU players alike have thrown the name of Glenn Dorsey into the ring. It wasn't that long ago, however, that "Corbello for Heisman" shirts could be seen on game days at LSU. So why not David too?

In that 2002 season, Corbello ended the year by hitting 17 field goals and 34 PATs. His numbers fall way short of what David has done this year. Of LSU's 434 points scored thus far, 56.9 percent have been scored by David. Surely that merits some Heisman attention…Right?

Forget it.

Just like Corbello's bid for the top individual college award, David's run for the same trophy awarded to Billy Cannon simply isn't going to happen. He'll only be appreciated in Baton Rouge this year. But with all of the big kicks, both in importance and length, maybe David should change his first name from "Colt" to "Clutch."

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