Virginia Tech kicker Joey Slye is in an unusual position of chasing a school career scoring record while trying to keep his starting job. 2017 has been the kicker’s most inconsistent season to date.
Slye is seven points from passing Shayne Graham (371 career points) as the Hokies all-time scoring leader. but at the same time, he has made only 8 of 14 field goal attempts on the year, and that includes making only 5 out 10 attempts from beyond 29 yards.
Virginia Tech coach Justin Fuente hasn’t indicated a change at the kicking position is imminent, but Slye’s struggles has been a source of conversation.
“I’ve been supportive of Joey, and continue to let him know that we’re behind him 100 percent,” Fuente said on his Monday local talk show reported by Virginian Pilot reporter Norm Wood, “I want him to continue to get better, but he has struggled. You can’t dodge that question or that fact. … He’s obviously got plenty of leg. It’s just a matter of hitting it true and getting it through the uprights.”
Currently, the Hokies have only other place-kicker, redshirt freshman Brian Johnson, on the roster. The youngster had only one kicking opportunity this season, a successful extra point attempt against East Carolina in Week 3.
Despite his issues with making field goals, Slye has been spectacular on kickoffs. He has put 32 of 34 kickoffs out of the end zone for touchbacks. Slye has made 71 of 99 career field goal attempts (making only 20 of 41 attempts from beyond 39 yards), which is a school record.
The Hokies travel to play Boston College on Oct. 7. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:15 p.m. ET on ESPN2.
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