July 20, 2010

Bertolet one of the country's best

A lot of people were surprised when Texas A&M received a commitment from Reading (Pa.) Exeter Township Senior High School kicker Taylor Bertolet July 18. Jamie Kohl, the founder of Kohl's Kicking Camps, thinks the Aggies have locked down a tremendous talent.

"We saw Taylor as a going to be junior and, since then, I've seen him seven or eight times. I've seen him a lot," Kohl told Aggieyell.com Monday. "Each time, he's gotten stronger and more explosive. He's always been a pretty refined ball striker for his age."

Kohl said Bertolet has consistently been a standout at his camps.

"Kicking off the block in our national camp, he came in second in his age group and we had 300 kids there," Kohl said. "I saw him in February in Pittsburgh and he was hitting the ball off the ground then and he was, in the indoor facility, hitting field goals that would have been good from 60-65 yards. I have a lot of guys who say they can hit field goals like that, but that's on a block with a 15 mph tailwind. It was really Taylor and everyone else, and we had kids from everywhere at that camp."

After a camp in East Stroudsburg, Pa., where Kohl said Bertolet stood out with kickoffs off a one inch tee that had a hang time over 4 seconds, the two made their way to College Station.

"He stuck out right away to coach Toth and Coach Sherman," Kohl said. "He was a guy they had earmarked. On July 11, the day they decided to go with him, he was kicking the ball six or seven yards deep into the end zone on kickoffs with no wind. That's rare to find, especially with someone who's not the biggest kid."

Kohl said Bertolet also won the Notre Dame camp, come in first in both field goals and kickoffs, and stood out at a camp at the University of Pittsburgh. He may obtain national attention in the Under Armor All-American Game, as Kohl has the responsibility of choosing the kickers for the event.

"He's got a tremendous chance to be selected," Kohl said. "It's really down to him and two other guys."

Kohl said A&M's situation is a perfect one for Bertolet.

"He can learn from Randy (Bullock), and I think Randy will have a great year. They're going to get it together this year," Kohl said. "As a kicker, you need that year to get adapted; you've got to be able to navigate those situations and that only comes with experience. Kyle Field's a windy stadium and there's going to be 90,000 people watching you kick, so it takes some getting used to."

"(Bertolet) is a good kid who works extremely hard. He's not a kid you'd worry about being trouble on the weekends. A&M got one of the top five kickers in the country, and he may end up number one."

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