Huskie punter one of five Huskies up for national honors
Northern Illinois University punter Tyler Wedel became the fifth Huskie named to a watch list when the junior was named a nominee for the 2013 Ray Guy Award, the Augusta Sports Council announced Friday.
The Ray Guy Award is awarded to the nation’s top punter each season and determined by a national selection committee made up of sportswriters, college football coaches, sports information directors and past Ray Guy winners.
The candidates were nominated for the award by their school’s sports information department.
A native of McFarland, Wis., Wedel is averaging 42.3 yards per punt on 35 punts in his first season handling the punting duties for the Huskies. His best performance of the season came at Kent State when he booted four punts for a season-high 44 yards per punt, including a career-high 56-yard boot. He ran for 42 yards on a fake punt at Iowa, setting up a Huskie field goal, in NIU’s 30-27 victory over the Hawkeyes.
In addition to punting for the Huskies, Wedel handles the kickoff duties for NIU as well. He is averaging 60.8 yards a kick with 20 touchbacks. He has also been subbing for placekicker Mathew Sims (Hannibal, Mo./Hannibal) on field goals and extra points. Wedel has connected on 3-of-5 field goal attempts, hitting a career-long 42 yarder against Akron, and is perfect on extra point attempts, going 8-for-8.
Wedel joins teammates Jordan Lynch (Chicago, Ill./Mt. Carmel) and Tommylee Lewis (Riviera Beach, Fla./W.T. Dwyer) and Sims on preseason watch lists. Lynch and Lewis were named to the Hornung Award Watch List, while Lynch was also named to the Maxwell Award Watch List. Sims is on the watch list for the Lou Groza Award.