In focus: OU kicker Austin Seibert

Freshman kicker/punter has lived up to the billing through first three games for Sooners.

Nick Hodgson said during preseason camp that Austin Seibert’s mouth pushed him more than Seibert’s leg. Well, Seibert’s leg probably had something to do with it.

Standing amid a crowd of reporters and TV cameras, Seibert was asked Monday what made him so cocky – err, confident – that he could take on two roles as a freshman. Seibert laughed it off, knowing that there was going to be a chance to him to be a starter as a punter and a kicker.

“I would have been happy just to get on the field, but I ended up winning both jobs so I’m going to do my best to do both of those well,” Seibert said.

Oklahoma had plenty of kicking woes last season. Michael Hunnicutt collapsed at the Sooners’ kicker, missing more field goals in his final year than he did in any other year. Jed Barnett had a solid season, except for that one punt.

Seibert is averaging 45.8 yards per punt thus far and has yet to miss a field goal, including a long of 41 yards.

“He’s a very confident young man, no question,” Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops said. “He’s been the same every day since he’s been here. He’s been really strong. He’s been awesome.”

Some thought that Seibert might be stretched to far doing both – having to master two very different kicking motions in a short time period. He put that to rest this week, saying that muscles for each motion are very different.

“It does put a little wear and tear on the body, but with my stature I should be able to get through it,” said Seibert, who at a generously listed 5-foot-10 is much shorter than either of his position predecessors. “I’m not skinny and I’m not super tall and I’ve done it my whole life. So my body is pretty used to it.”

His confidence doesn’t permeate every part of his life, though.

Stoops recalled a bye week story when asked about whether Seibert’s double duty would cause fatigue. Stoops was eating lunch with his family on the OU golf course, and Seibert showed up for a round with Mark Andrews and Wesley Horky.

Stoops didn’t join them.

Seibert didn’t ask.

The trio went over and spoke with their coach but never extended the invitation.

“I’m awful at golf,” said Seibert, who was golfing for only the second time but said he spent much of the day looking for his balls.

His golf game doesn’t matter to many as long as he keeps kicking the way he is. Seibert is even meeting his own lofty – confidence-boosted – goals.

“I think I’m meeting my expectations, but the expectations here are so high,” Seibert said. “I just want to perform better than I can.”


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