Freshman place kicker Christian Hagan has provided stability in the kicking game during football’s past two wins.
Hagan took over place kicking duties from senior Tyler Wedel against the Ball State Cardinals Nov. 5 in Muncie, Ind. Through two games Hagan is 8-8 on extra point attempts and 2-2 on field goal attempts.
Hagan connected on a 37-yard field goal and a 19-yard field goal in the Huskies’ 27-24 victory over the Toledo Rockets Tuesday at Huskie Stadium. He was named MAC West Special Teams Player of the Week for his performance against the Rockets.
Northern Star: How did it feel to make your first career field goals?
Christian Hagan: It felt good. I mean, coming [in] and making the first one was obviously big. It gave me a huge confidence boost, so it kind of set up the rest of the game that way. And then in the first game [against Ball State], making all the extra points helped out a lot, too.
NS: It was pretty cold and windy against Toledo. How did those conditions compare to kicking in Nebraska?
CH: It gets really cold in Nebraska, too. It’s all the Midwest, so it’s kind of the same thing. I felt pretty good about it. I mean, I’ve kicked in cold before, so it’s nothing really new to me.
NS: What range would you say you are comfortable with when kicking field goals?
CH: It depends on the weather and how cold and how windy it is that day. So, it kind of varies from day to day, especially now with the weather. I feel comfortable everywhere, but again, it depends on the wind. And wherever [head] coach [Rod] Carey wants me to kick it from I’ll kick wherever.
NS: In addition to kicking in high school you also played quarterback. Have the duties of playing quarterback helped you out at all in the kicking game?
CH: You have to have a lot of confidence, especially doing quarterback and then kicking. So, that definitely prepared me for everything I’ve had to do with kicking this year so far.
NS: Toledo wide receiver Dwight Macon, a former high school quarterback, came in and performed pretty well Tuesday. As a former quarterback do you think you could have come in and did something on the level he did if the Huskies needed you to?
CH: I mean, I feel like we’d have to go pretty far down the line for me to play quarterback. But, I mean, if they really needed me, I don’t know, I guess. That’s a pretty long shot for me to play quarterback here. I don’t know if that’s even possible.