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The Cardinal Countdown: 28 Days Until Kickoff

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NCAA Football: Louisville at Syracuse
“Hey, there’s my foot...”
Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

#28 Mason King

Class: RS Senior

Ht/Wt: 6-3/216

Position: Punter

Hometown: Louisville, KY (Product of St. Xavier High School)

Twitter: @KingMason502

Thoughts: It’s not often that you get a kicker to come in and earn the starting spot as a freshman and then hold onto it for four straight years, but that’s exactly what’s gonna happen in the case of Blanton Creque. It’s also not that often that you get a punter to come in and earn the starting job as a freshman then hold onto it for four years, but that’s exactly what’s gonna happen in the case of Mason King. What even crazier? Both those players are going to accomplish that feat during the same four year span. I’ve been screaming it since 2016 but one last time for the people in the back, Louisville is losing two absolute studs on special teams after 2019. That’s reason number 37 why I’m rocking this thing in my office cubicle all season long.

Mason strolled into town, took a redshirt to give his boots time to acclimate to the college life, then slipped on some cleats and kicked the absolute crap out of the ball. As a freshman Mason ‘Da’ King set the school record for punting average on the season at 43.9yds (19th nationally). He also dropped 16 inside the 20 and let another 14 fly over 50 yards.

As a sophomore he finished at 43.9yds again (22nd nationally), sending 10 punts over 50 yards and putting 10 inside the 20. As a Junior last year, he punted the ball 69 times (lots of nice punts) dropping 19 inside the 20 and five that traveled more than 50 yards. For his career Mason currently sits at 8th in the history of Louisville football with 7,098 yards, and that includes 2017 where he only had 43 punts. With an average year Mason will likely finish Top 3 all-time in punting yardage. Mason also sits in first place for career punting average with 42.5 yds/punt. As long as he finishes 2019 with an average of 42yd/punt or better he will finish his career at number one all time in Louisville history. That means we have the potential of seeing a punter break the school record for average distance in his career in parallel with the most accurate kicker (Creque) to ever play for UofL. Pay your respects, folks.

Mason, a local young man who came in and earned the stating spot has never looked back in four consecutive seasons. A big tip of the cap to the cowboy from ‘The Ville’ as he goes down as one of the best to ever do it.

Sweet Tweet:

Remember when football was fun, and Louisville won a bunch of games? Let’s do that again. 4 Weeks.

****

Season 1, Episode 7 of “Hi, My Name is…”

Hi, My Name Is: Stu Holt

I grew up in: Hamptonville, NC

I played football at: North Carolina (Long Snapper)

I previously coached at: Appalachian State (Running Backs/Special Teams)

I am now the: Tight Ends/Special Teams Coach

I’ve been a coach for: 22 seasons at the collegiate level

I am: Married with three daughters

Fun Fact: When Coach Holt came to Appalachian State back in 2015 he took the Mountaineers from 128th to 25th in special team’s efficiency. In 2018 App State had four touchdowns on kick returns and ranked second nationally in kickoff return average (28.8yds/ret). The Mountaineers also blocked six kicks last season, good enough for fourth nationally.

CardinalStrong says: Stu Holt will collect a check this season as a really good special teams coach, relying heavily on some very experienced players to continue their successful collegiate careers. Next season though, Holt will earn that check, replacing a punter, a kicker, and likely teaching some new return men. Holt has the rep of being a great special teams coach and I think he’ll excel in that area in the future. The question for me is how he’ll develop the tight ends, only having a single season of experience in coaching that position. In this offense we know the importance of the tight end and the H-Back so having a coach that can train and teach that position/role will be vital to the success of the offense. Holt has been in the profession a long time and has proven he can be successful. Bringing him over was nice get for the program and I think he’ll prove his worth the next couple seasons.