2022 Soccer Preview: Specialists – College of Tennessee at Chattanooga Athletics

August 28, 2022

CHATTANOOGA—The 2022 soccer season is quick approaching for the Twelfth-ranked Chattanooga Mocs. Kickoff is simply SIX days away on the time of this publication. Tickets can be found on the hyperlink above with extra data later to see the preseason Southern Convention favorites.
The ultimate installment in our position-by-position preview is right here for the upcoming marketing campaign.
Vol. 1:
Defensive Line
Vol. 2: Offensive Line
Vol. 3: Linebackers
Vol. 4: Quarterbacks
Vol. 5: Secondary
Vol. 6: Running Backs
Vol. 7: Receivers & Tight Ends
We travel into the special teams room to complete our trip around position groups. It’s likely the deepest in school history with two punters, three placekickers and four long snappers. That includes all starters returning.
Quick Take with Special Teams Coordinator Mike Yeager
“We’re very fortunate to have some great depth this year. It’s an area where we have two guys who punted a lot and done well. We have multiple guys who have ability to be very good at long at snapping. We’ve got veteran who’s kicked a lot and a very, very talented freshman who’s getting better every day.”
The Special Teams Breakdown
Starters Returning/Lost: 3/0
Letter Winners Returning/Lost: 4/2
Redshirts Returning: 1 – Jon Estes (Fr.)
Newcomers (Yr.): 4 – Andrew Southard (Fr.), Jake Hall (Jr.-Alabama), Grant Reid (Fr.-Tennessee) & Brody Gann (Fr.)
By the Numbers
2 Veteran Punters
Seniors Gabe Boring and Jason Pierce are back. Pierce is a former All-Ohio Valley Conference punter at Jacksonville State, while Boring has been a regular in both punting and as a kickoff specialist entering his fifth year in the program.
3 Placekickers
Junior Aaron Sears leads the room after a solid first season in the Scenic City leading the team in scoring. That included a 3-3 performance in the narrow loss at Kentucky last September. Jon Estes redshirted in 2021, while true freshman signee Andrew Southard has impressed including closing a recent practice with a 52-yarder through the uprights under immense pressure with the entire team surrounding him. There may have been added strain of post-practice running and conditioning break with a make, but we can neither confirm nor deny that.
4 Long Snappers
FOUR long snappers. Cody Olszewski handled snaps on field goals last season, while the graduated Bryce Coulson was the main man on punts. Alabama transfer Jake Hall is competing for snaps along with Tennessee transfer Grant Reid and true freshman Brody Gann.
The Final Word on the Field Goal Process
What’s the most important part of making a field goal? We asked an expert 3-person panel which step is most important? The answers widely varied.
“It’s the snap,” began long snapper Cody Olszewski.
“It’s gotta be the hold,” added holder Gabe Boring.
“It’s absolutely the kick,” countered kicker Aaron Sears.
Ok, so that’s typed firmly tongue in cheek. But they all actually agree, there is not a “most important” part. Without a solid snap, the holder can’t put the kicker in the right position. The holder has a distinct spot they put the ball that is the kicker’s target. If they miss the spot, it affects the trajectory of the kick. And of course, the kicker makes the vital swing. If any of those steps are amiss, it’s tough to overcome. It is the most coordinated part of the game.
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