Most kickers don’t receive the same recognition of many skill-position players or linemen. However, Daniel Carlson (Colorado Springs, Colo./Classical Academy) isn’t like most kickers.
Carlson is considered one of the nation’s best – if not the best in his class – and a very dependable special teams option. As a kicker, he connects from 55-to-60 yards regularly and has nailed a career-best 68-yarder, and he also has a booming leg on kickoffs. As a punter, he averages better than 40 yards per attempt.
Add the fact that he’s a big, athletic kid – he’s 6-foot-5 and 190 pounds, and he has an extensive soccer background – and it’s clear to see why he’s such a coveted recruit. Carlson already has an offer from Auburn, and he’s receiving major looks from Baylor, Virginia, Oregon and California.
“I went down [to Auburn] for their junior day [in February], and [special teams coordinator] Jay Boulware basically told me they were planning on offering me eventually,” Carlson said. “I haven’t kicked in front of anybody, but over the summer, when I’m able to do that, that should answer a lot of questions.
“I visited Baylor and Virginia. Baylor said they’re going to try and fly out in May to watch me kick and offer depending on that. Virginia said basically the same thing, but they haven’t decided if they will scholarship a kicker. Once they decide that, they said they’d let me know.”
Carlson said he plans on returning to Auburn and Virginia and is considering visiting Oregon and Cal. He added that he not only will attend a couple of college camps to be determined but also one of the Kohl’s national training camps, which caters to kickers, punters and long snappers. Carlson is the nation’s top-ranked kicker in the 2013 class, according to the Kohl’s national rankings.