EWU kicker honored as season approaches

EWU kicker honored as season approaches

Sixth-year senior kicker Roldan Alcobendas has been selected as one of 34 placekickers nationwide to be named to the watch list for the 2018 Fred Mitchell Award. The recipient of the Fred Mitchell Award will be chosen at the end of the year based on excellence on the football field and in the community. This season, Alcobendas will also add punting duties to his kicking chores.

As a bonus for his past suffering, the 2013 graduate of Camas (Wash.) High School received a sixth year to complete four years of eligibility because of injuries that cost him a pair of seasons. In his 29-game career, he has scored 201 points to rank third in school history in points kicking. He is only 30 points from No. 2 (Troy Griggs, 231, 1998-01) and 35 from the record (Mike Jarrett, 236, 2008-11).

He missed his first extra point attempt of the game against UC Davis on Oct. 7, 2017, ending his school-record string of consecutive career extra points made at 85. He made 20-of-31 field goals and 141-of-146 extra points in his career. He ranks seventh in school history in both field goal attempts and made, and is No. 2 in extra points made and attempted (the records are 143 makes and 150 attempts).

In the 2017 season, he made 46-of-47 extra point attempts and 10-of-14 field goals. He also handled kickoff duties much of the season, and averaged 59.8 yards on 39 kicks in 2017 with seven touchbacks. In his career, he has 107 kickoffs for a 57.4 average (6,143 total yards) with 17 touchbacks.

Alcobendas had to sit out both the 2013 and 2015 seasons because of knee injuries. He finished the 2016 season 9-of-15 kicking field goals and made 73-of-74 extra points. He made his last 63 extra points in a row in 2016 to shatter the previous season record of 47. His 73 total extra points made in 2016 were one behind the Big Sky Conference record of 74 set by former Eagle Kevin Miller in 2013. He also averaged 54.6 yards on 44 kickoffs with seven touchbacks.

Returning to the venue he suffered a season-ending knee injury in 2014, Alcobendas made field goals of 48 and 31 yards and had a career-high 11 total points in EWU’s 41-17 victory over Montana State in 2016 to earn Big Sky Conference Special Teams Player of the Week honors. His 48-yarder was the best of his career, and equals the 23rd-longest in school history. He also had a 31-yarder blocked and made all five of his extra point attempts to account for 11 of EWU’s points. In addition, he averaged 64.0 yards in three kickoffs, including one touchback.

More on the Fred Mitchell Award Watch List . . .

The watch list recognizes 34 placekickers from 22 states and two countries, representing FCS, Division II, Division III, and NAIA institutions.

The annual Fred Mitchell Outstanding Place-Kicker Award (also known as the Fred Mitchell Award) is provided to the nation’s top collegiate place-kicker among more than 750 FCS, Division II, III, NAIA and NJCAA football teams.

The Award is named for Fred Mitchell, the record-setting place-kicker, Wittenberg University Athletic Hall of Famer, author, philanthropist and former Chicago Tribune sports columnist.

The recipient of the Fred Mitchell Award will be chosen based on excellence on the football field and in the community.

The Award’s Watch List is released in August, top performers are recognized monthly during the college football season, and the winner (who is not required to be on the Watch List) is announced in mid-December.

The school of the award winner receives scholarship funds and the Fred Mitchell Award trophy is presented each February at the National Football Foundation Chicago Metro Chapter Awards Ceremony at Halas Hall.