Following last season’s place kicking inconsistencies, the Texas Longhorns may once again have a reliable leg on the Forty Acres in JUCO early enrollee kicker Joshua Rowland.
As a sophomore at Mississippi Gulf Coast C.C, Rowland connected on 9-of-12 field goals and 32-of-33 extra points to follow up a freshman campaign in which he earned second-team NJCAA All-American honors after converting 16-of-19 field goals and 44-of-44 extra points.
“He was an All-American kicker last year who was solid again this year," Mississippi Gulf Coast head coach Chad Huff said. "He's a great kicker who was always steady. He helped us in special teams more than you can imagine."
If there’s an area of potential improvement for Rowland, it’s leg strength. In two seasons at Mississippi Gulf Coast, Rowland connected on 25-of-31 field goals and an impressive 76-of-77 extra points, but his career-long field goal is just 44 yards, which came last season on a night when he connected on all four field goal attempts and all five extra points. Even if 44-to-46 yards proves to be Rowland’s typical range, remaining consistently accurate throughout the spring and summer may be enough to land him the starting job over Mitchell Becker, who drilled both of his attempts last season.
At 5’10, 175 pounds, Rowland joined the burnt orange nation as the No. 1 junior college kicker, per 247Sports Composite. Rowland became the first member of Texas’ 2017 class to commit to Tom Herman.
Unlike his fellow early enrollees and signees, Rowland signed with Texas during the JUCO signing period in December and officially enrolled in January.