'Punter U' will send off another solid kicker when senior Ball State punter Scott Kovanda meets Central Florida in The Beef 'O' Brady Bowl against Central Florida on Dec. 21. Kovanda was in Orlando last week as a Ray Guy Award finalist, and talked to Matt Murschel of the Orlando Sentinel about the long line of punters -- including Chris Miller, Brad Maynard and Reggie Hodges -- he has followed at Ball State. He said Miller in particular encouraged him:
"He told me about the tradition of Punter U," said Kovanda. "He said, 'Here is a gap to fill. You are the next guy in line.' I took a lot of pride in it and I am trying to live up to what everyone expects."
Kovanda had a 40.2 average on 44 punts, with five of those kicks being returned for an 0.8 average per return. He lost out to Louisiana Tech's Ryan Allen for the Ray Guy, but stil ranks highly on the the Cardinals' record book. This will be Kovanda's first chance to play in a bowl game in his four seasons as Ball State's punter, and appreciates the national award recognition:
"Every time the punter comes onto the field, it's usually fourth down and the team is pretty upset because the offense couldn't convert on third down," Kovanda said. "So, it's nice to get some positive recognition."