The seventh commitment of Georgia Tech's 2013 class was, of all positions, a kicker. Conventionally, schools do not spend a scholarship on the kicker position, based on the fact that good kickers seem to be relatively easy to find and/or replace within a student body. However, after the 2011 campaign Coach Johnson acknowledged that our kicking situation wasn't in a good place and wasn't going to get better without spending a scholarship on it. Thus, we went out and got a guy who could single-handedly have the most impact on Tech's fortunes out of anyone in his signing class.
Butker stands at 6'3", and weighs 170lbs -- a very tall, slim frame for a kicker. Butker also played soccer in high school (naturally), which may help to explain his slim physique. His film shows that he has a ton of leg, hitting field goals with relative ease from distances as far as 51 yards. You'll also notice that kicking off from the 40, many of his kicks went out of the back of the end zone. Both of these measures should translate well to the college level. There are two other things that should be noted about his field goal kicking. First, Butker has almost no time to get his kicks off thanks to terrible protection -- yet he still can get plenty of power behind them. The reason is point number two -- Butker is a natural two-step kicker (as opposed to some kickers, who use three steps). This is a much tougher ability to learn and adapt, but allows much less opportunity for error in a kicker's wind-up (33% less, as it turns out) and allows him to get a kick off much quicker.
At the end of the day, Butker hasn't gotten to Tech and had a chance to compete with David Scully, but considering the last two years after Scott Blair left, it's going to be tough to imagine the freshman not getting the nod this fall (barring injury, of course), and starting all four years that he's on campus.
Do you think Butker has what it takes to start this fall? Does he give you hope for our kicking situation?