Ever seen that popular reality game show that features participants demonstrating how many night crawlers they can eat, how many hissing snakes they can lie with or how many cow bile pizzas they can consume within a particular time frame to face their fears?Â If you have, you can identify with the notion that some of that stuff is really hard to watch with your own eyes.Â Some contestants do more than you thought possible and some do less.Â While not as grotesque, the Texas kicking game has had its share of unpredictability this season.Â After the Penn State player sweepstakes were all said and done the Longhorns acquired Anthony Fera, filling a noticeable void at kicker/punter.â€¦ only Fera has been battling a groin injury for the better part of a couple of months and has missed the first three games of the season.Â Luckily the Longhorns have put up enough points against Wyoming, New Mexico and Ole Miss to avoid needing a game winning field goal.Â Feraâ€™s timetable for a return remains uncertain but we can only assume it will be soon.Â With the Longhorns heading into the thick of Big12 play, the Longhorns need to shore up the kicking game, which could prove to be a key component in pulling off a win against an Oklahoma State, West Virginia or Oklahoma team.
Mack Brown had this to say today speaking specifically about Fera and the team injuries:
So Fera could come back and play against Oklahoma State, right?Â Possibly, but it remains to be seen just how effective Fera could be given the fact he has not kicked field goals since he was in State College, Pennsylvania.Â In a best case scenario Fera trots out on the field at Boone Pickens Stadium on Saturday with Texas blowing out the Cowboys to test his accuracy and the progress of his groin.Â The worst case scenario?Â Freshman kicker Nick Jordan squaring up for a 45 yard field goal with the Longhorns down by 2 with 3 seconds left in the game.Â I dig Nick Jordan just as much as the next guy but heâ€™s no Justin Tucker.Â Nor is he supposed to beâ€¦. yet.Â Jordan was thrown into his role and is partaking in invaluable â€œon the job training.â€Â It is not the ideal situation but Mack Brown has no other option right now.
How good this team can be this year remains to be seen but a significant component will indubitably be the kicking game.Â In three games this season Nick Jordan has attempted 7 field goals and has made 3 of them, with his longest being a 38 yarder against New Mexico.Â Last season at Penn State Anthony Fera made 14/17 field goal attempts with kicks of 43 and 46 yards in the Ohio State game, which propelled the Nittany Lions to victory over the Buckeyes.
The â€œFeraâ€ factor is a variable the Longhorns want in play and one they want in play soon.Â If Fera is not booting field goals in Stillwater expect to see him in action against West Virginia in Austin.Â The Longhorns cannot get through the year undefeated without him.