#49 Colin Holba
Class: RS Senior
Position: Long Snapper
Hometown: Louisville, KY (Product of Eastern High School)
Thoughts: I cannot think of a more majestic player to kick off the downhill journey on the other side of “50” days than the long snapper. If you’ve read this countdown for the last five years (yikes) then you know my affinity for long snappers and the pleasure they bring me. Sure, it may have started as a simple ruse, but it’s grown into something much greater. After watching far too many long snapping recruiting videos, reading way too many long snapping tips/tricks articles, and of course becoming fully engrossed in the long snapping “trick shots” videos, I think I genuinely love these guys now.
All jokes aside, Colin is very important to our special teams unit this year because he, and he alone, is the only returning starter. John Wallace (kicker) is gone, Ryan Johnson (punter) is gone, and Will Gardner (holder) is….wait for it…..gone. Colin is holding down the fort for Coach Tony Grantham as the lone man with significant game experience, and in case you forgot, he just earned that starting spot last year after the departure of Grant Donovan.
Underestimate the importance of the long snapper all you want, but don’t come crying to me when the ball goes sailing over the punters head or skips to the holder on a field goal. These guys are just as important as any other player on the field and one may argue (me) more important than many others because their action is a direct reflection of two of the most important aspects of the game. Points (Field Goals and extra points) and field position (punts). Give me an accurate long snapper over an average tight end every single day of the week.
Psst…there’s not another Countdown post until Day 46 but it’s [I’m busting at the seams right now] another long snapper!
The worst part about college sports is that you never get to play with the same group of guys twice— Colin Holba (@ColinHolba) June 12, 2016
I remember getting bummed after realizing my little league team wasn’t going to play together anymore after a season, can’t imagine the feeling after investing hundreds of hours, blood, sweat, and tears together all year. We as fans can move on fairly quickly but let’s remember that these young men come together as a unit every season and want to succeed far more than we could ever imagine. I don’t spend 100 days counting this thing down for you to check out after a couple weeks if things don’t go as planned. Wins are important, but as we learned last season we can still enjoy the ride even if the losses pile up early.