2016 Johns Hopkins Football Preview - Special Teams
BALTIMORE, MD – In the first of a seven-part series breaking down the 2016 Johns Hopkins football team, HopkinsSports.com takes a look at the Blue Jay special teams. While newcomers to the program may make an impact this season, the breakdown includes only returning players.
Who's Back: Just like last year, pretty much everyone. Two place-kickers, one punter and the team’s top kickoff/punt return specialist. In addition, a number of players who were on the kickoff and punt return and coverage teams are also back.
Place-Kickers: Hard to imagine any team in the nation has two place-kickers returning more experienced than Johns Hopkins’ pair of senior Nick Campbell and Jamie Sullivan, who have shared the job the last two years.
Campbell enters his final season having converted 117-of-121 (.944) extra points and 17-of-24 (.708) field goals, while Sullivan is 66-of-68 (.971) on extra points and 9-of-12 (.750) on field goals. Sullivan has also handled the kickoff chores over the last two years.
Punters: Sophomore Brandon Hong-Dominguez stepped in and handled the punting chores as a freshman last season and averaged 35.9 yards per punt with 10 of his 38 attempts dropping inside the opponent’s 20-yard line. Senior Matt Auran can also step in here as he averaged 33.0 yards per attempt as Hopkins’ top punter two years ago.
The Return Game: Senior Bradley Munday, one of the most explosive wide receivers in school history, has averaged 27.7 yards on 24 career kickoff returns and has also handed a majority of the punt return chores in the last three years as well. In more limited roles, junior David Brookhart (21.0 ypr.) and sophomore Tyler Messinger (27.6) are also averaging better than 20 yards per kickoff return in their careers and both should see time with Munday back deep.
We’ve Got You Covered: Eleven players had five more special teams tackles in 2015 and nine of the 11 are back this season. Junior Keonte Henson was in on a team-high 14 special teams tackles a year ago, while Dan Johnson (12), Pat Runger (10) and Arman Mizani (10) also reached double figures in special teams stops. Johnson is one of the top special teams players in the nation as he counts 27 special teams stops to his credit in the last two years alone.
Inside the Numbers
664 – Career kickoff return yards for senior Bradley Munday. With 336 return yards this season, he’ll become just the fourth player in school history to reach 1,000 career kickoff return yards.
16.5- The opposition averaged just 16.5 yards per kickoff return against the Blue Jays last season – the lowest average against JHU since 2002.
8 – Only eight punts were returned against Johns Hopkins last season.
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