June 28, 2013

David does it all

"Versatility" isn't often a word associated with placekickers. More often than not, the image that springs to mind is of a solitary soldier on the end of the sidelines, warming up the leg and waiting for that one specific moment to shine - or live in infamy. In college and the NFL, kickers fill a very limited and specialized role.

That's not the case for Massillon (Ohio) Washington junior Andrew David. He committed to Michigan Monday morning to serve as the Wolverines' kicker down the road. However, he's also able to do much more than that.

"He's still young: He's only going into his junior year," said Massillon coach Jason Hall. "He's just getting better every day. By the time he gets to Michigan and gets comfortable there, I could see him be able to hold the kickoff and placekicking duties. He would kick a 54-yard field goal in the ninth grade. He had a couple plus-50 kicks. Very accurate in his placekicking.

"On top of it, he's an athlete. There's not many kids like him. He's a really good baseball player - I'm sure he's going to play baseball there as well - he's also competing to be our starting quarterback. He could possibly have multiple roles. He's our punter as well, he can boom the ball punting. He's Mr. Do-Everything."

The 5-9, 165-pound David is a key cog in the storied program that is Massillon. He's already a two-year starter for the Tigers, with the opportunity to increase his role by succeeding Oregon State-bound signal caller Kyle Kempt as the triggerman for the offense.

He's strong-legged - and also strong-armed - and a well-rounded kicker. That's the type of player who makes a good addition to any program. It was particularly fortunate for Michigan that he grew up cheering for the Wolverines.

"His family has been involved with Michigan and been Michigan people for a long time, all the way back to his grandpa," Hall said. "We knew all along if he got a Michigan offer that he would be committing there. That's been his dream since he was a kid. He's been a Michigan guy for a long time."

Former Massillon standout Shawn Crable, who went on to an All-Big Ten career at Michigan, is back with the program, and David's family relationship (thanks to his father, a former coach with Massillon) with Crable enabled him to see the action in the Big House up close and personal.

"He's got pictures of being five or six years old on the sidelines," Hall said with a laugh. "There's pictures of him on the sidelines with Shawn Crable up there."

That fandom - and Michigan's offer being his first - made for an easy decision for David. Now that he has his recruitment out of the way, he can focus on the field. The quick conclusion to a potentially distracting process will allow him to improve his game and get ready for Michigan.

"He's only going into his junior year," Hall said. "The thing that he does that a lot of high school kids don't is he's already kicking off the ground or 1-inch tees in preparation for college. He's just getting better every day.

"He won't have to go through a lot of that drama in the next couple years, which will be a huge relief for he and his family. He can focus on just his development as a kicker, quarterback, punter, all the stuff he's going to do for our program. He's just a well-rounded kid and we're excited for him.

"I'm happy it came that Michigan offered when they did because that's just been his dream and the recruiting process is done. I think it's a huge relief for him."

...More... To continue reading this article you must be a member. Sign Up Now!