The Texas Longhorns added what could be a crucial piece to the 2012 puzzle on Wednesday with a press release from the university announcing that former Duke punter Alex King, a graduate transfer, has enrolled at the school.
A second-team All-ACC performer in 2011 when he averaged just over 42 yards per punt (Justin Tucker averaged 38.6 ypp), including seven over 50 yards. I guess there is where the joke about the Duke offense goes. Followed by a joke about the 2011 Texas offense.
Anyway, here's what King had to say about his decision:
The coaches, facilities, fans, and strong football tradition first attracted me, but in such a short time period the relationships between myself and the coaches and staff at UT are what made me feel most comfortable with changing schools for my final year. There is so much talent at UT, and I was also impressed with the humility of many of this year’s incoming freshmen when I met them. I am excited to be a part of this team.
I can neither confirm nor deny rumors that King followed up his statement with this comment: "Also, it's not Duke football, which is not a particularly football-like substance."
King will likely be on scholarship for his final season of eligibility and was brought in by the Texas staff to compete for the job with junior Will Russ, who has been inconsistent throughout his career, as well as any other warm bodies capable of drop-kicking the ball. Nick Jordan told me at the US Army game that he will work on his punting over the summer. Preferred walk-on Nick Rose, who could be the odds-on favorite to win kickoff duties in the fall, could also be in the mix.
Several players will have to emerge to take over the duties vacated by Longhorn legend Justin Tucker and the coaching staff surely hopes that King will figure prominently into the mix. If not, it probably means that Will Russ stepped up his game, which isn't a bad thing either.