Prior to 2010, Boston College had some interesting times with kickers. Between one who couldn’t make extra points and suffered suspensions and a walk-on soccer player, there were several years where fans wondered where the Eagles were finding them. Then came Nate Freese to try to bring stability to the role.
Now a junior, this Ohioan only got two stars from the recruiting agencies that chose to rate him out of Strongsville High School, but while stars for kickers don’t necessarily mean much, Freese flew under the radar a bit. Aside from BC, his other offers were Kansas, Air Force, and Toledo.
His freshman season of 2010 was quite good; Freese did about as well as anyone could have expected. Freese made 22 of 25 field goal attempts and all but one of 25 PATs. He was perfect inside 30 yards and 10 of 13 from longer distance, with his season long at 49 yards.
Freese’s sophomore year of 2011 was not as flashy, and perhaps unfairly, his season was defined by one moment. On September 17, Freese lined up for what may have been a game-winning kick to beat Duke, but he hit the upright and the Eagles lost the game by a point. He did as well as 2010 with extra points, connecting on 26 of 27, but that field goal miss was one of six he had for the year (10/16). Freese increased his career long to 52 yards, but missed four kicks inside 40 yards.
He is in little danger of losing his starting job this year, or next year for that matter. Alex Howell, a highly-regarded young kicker, waits behind him in line, but they won’t make the change unless they must. Besides, Howell is more likely to ascend to the punter’s role than anything else right now. So long as Freese continues to be adequate, BC will keep sending him out there.