Auburn football: Projecting the Tigers' post-spring punter depth chart

rblack@ledger-enquirer.comMay 19, 2014 

Editor's note: Auburn's spring practice concluded with the A-Day game April 19. Some positions didn't change. Some had upheaval. With that in mind, Auburn beat writer Ryan Black will give his position-by-position projection of the entire depth chart as the Tigers head into the summer. The series concludes with the punters.

Who's Who:

Jack Bjork, redshirt freshman: N/A; redshirted last season

Jimmy Hutchinson, redshirt freshman: N/A; redshirted last season

Tyler Stovall, redshirt freshman: N/A; redshirted last season


Pre-spring projection:

1. Hutchinson

2. Bjork or Stovall

Post-spring projection:

1. Hutchinson

2. Bjork or Stovall

Analysis: Nearly everything said in Sunday's projection about kicker could be copied and pasted here.

All that really has to be done is put Steven Clark's name where Cody Parkey's was and replace every Daniel Carlson reference with Hutchinson. Just like Carlson, Hutchinson is the only player vying for the starting job who owns a scholarship. And yes, as one would expect, that means it was basically Hutchinson's "job to lose" this spring.

But by all accounts, Hutchinson seemed to perform just fine. Fans got their first glimpse of him during the A-Day game, when he punted five times for 203 yards, good for an average of 40.6 yards per attempts. That's strikingly similar to Clark, who averaged 40.7 yards per punt in his four years on the Plains.

Of course, it wasn't distance that made Clark so dangerous last season; it was his ability to pin opponents deep in their own territory with regularity. Asking Hutchinson to duplicate that kind of consistency this fall would be unfair.

He has two things going for him, though: First, his status as the starter is unquestioned. Secondly, and perhaps more importantly, the Tigers' offense might be so explosive that Hutchinson's services might not be called upon all that often.

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