Position Previews: Specialists

Danny Karnik/Georgia Tech Athletics

Our Countdown to Kickoff continues today as we wrap up our "Position Previews" mini-series by looking at our specialists.

Countdown to Kickoff: 19 Days...

Departed Players

Justin Moore (kicked off team), Chris Tanner (graduated)

Depth Chart Speculation
Position First String Second String
K Harrison Butker (Fr) David Scully (R-Sr)
P Sean Poole (R-Sr)
Ryan Rodwell (So)
KR1 Jamal Golden (Jr) Tony Zenon (R-Jr)
KR2 Broderick Snoddy (R-So) B.J. Bostic (R-Jr)
PR Jamal Golden (Jr) Jemea Thomas (R-Sr)

Isn't it interesting what a conundrum it is of how much this unit gets brushed off to the side, while being pointed at as the group that can win or lose a game? Going into this year, we're a little more confident in who will be doing what than we were last year. The first thing that probably caught your eye up there is Harrison Butker being listed at Kicker -- I think he'll be the best kicker that we've had here since Scott Blair, and maybe beyond. Scully may still see some time on shorter kicks if consistency issues arise in the freshman, but I expect a majority of action to fall on Butker.

The punter situation seems to be a wash. Neither guy seems to be a leader, and they'll probably legitimately split time all season lest one gets injured. What could be interesting is if both get injured, in which case I have no clue whatsoever who the third punter would be. (Chances are duties would go to Butker or Scully.)

It's a given that Jamal Golden will be the #1 guy at KR and PR after his breakout season last year, but what's in question is who will flank him at KR and back him up at PR. At KR, the partner-in-crime would appear to be Broderick Snoddy, who CPJ seems intent on giving a larger role this year. The biggest concern with him will be ball security, but it sounds like his explosiveness will be extremely valuable in this role. I'd imagine that behind him will be Tony Zenon and BJ Bostic, a couple of speedy backs with experience running back kicks. I seem to remember Zenon in particular taking one all the way to inside the 10 as a freshman, before being run down from behind (which he said was a first in his life).

At PR, the backup in my opinion will be Jemea Thomas. I say this for three reasons. First, Jemea is a defensive player by trade, and my personal preference is to use a DB at PR rather than a RB or WR. (Got all that?) Second, Jemea has experience returning punts after he took over the duties mid-season in 2011. Finally, Jemea appears to have solid decision-making abilities and very reliable hands, and tends to be a guy who you can count on to not drop a ball coming his way. Thus, in my mind he's the backup PR.

Does all of this check out to you? Is any of it surprising? Who would be your backup PR?

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