Hoo Preview 2012: Special Teams

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Roster Distribution (Specialists)


  • Jacob Hodges, 5’11”, 190 (H)



  • Blake Blaze, 6’4″, 210 (LS)
  • Jeb Byrne, 6’3″, 205 (LS)
  • Matt Fortin, 5’11”, 190 (LS)


  • James Coleman, 6’2″, 190 (P)
  • Nicholas Conte, 6’3″, 200 (P)
  • Ian Frye , 6’6″, 210*
  • Charlie Richards, 6’0″, 210 (LS)*
  • Dylan Sims, 6’0″, 185 (PK)
  • Willem van Reeseman, 6’0″, 190 (PK)
  • *Redshirt freshmen

The Virginia special teams as a whole were up and down last season. Starting placekicker Robert Randolph connected on his first eight field goals of the season, including the game winner against Indiana, but then hit a string of four misses in five tries. In addition, senior punter Jimmy Howell capped off his UVa career with another solid season, but got blocked for the first time.

Along the way, the cover and return units provided Cavalier fans with plenty of headaches in 2011 too, especially on punt returns. The entire special teams unit hit a wall in the Chick-fil-A Bowl in Atlanta. The Cavaliers had two punts blocked, sent a kickoff out of bounds, poorly executed a fake field goal, and failed to recover an onside kick.

Inexperience may have played a role. Rookies were all over the field on special teams last season, especially in the return game. Special teams coordinator Anthony Poindexter says that last season was trial by fire for the freshmen, and it provided them with