Boston College’s kicking difficulties have been well-documented over the past few years. Early on this season, it looked like it would be more of the same story.
Mike Knoll, who infamously missed the extra point at Yankee Stadium that cost BC a chance at winning the Pinstripe Bowl, did not start the season as the Eagles’ #1 placekicker; that role belonged to Colton Lichtenberg. But after BC went 0-for-2 on field goals in Dublin, Knoll was reinserted as the top kicker.
Knoll has been steady and reliable since then, completing 10 of 11 field goals and going 22-for-23 on extra points (including 10 straight games without a missed PAT sice missing one against UMass in week 2).
While Steve Addazio hasn’t sent Knoll out to kick field goals longer than 40 yards often - he's 1-for-2 from beyond 40 this season - not having a deep range is not really a huge problem for BC right now given the way the last few seasons have gone. What he’s finally provided the Eagles is a reliable kicker from inside 40 yards who will not cost them games.
Having a kicking game would have won BC a couple of games in 2014 and 2015 that they lost. Last year, BC’s four kickers went a combined 6-for-11. In 2014, BC kickers were 12-for-19, and an astonishing 35-for-42 on extra points.
Mike Knoll deserves a lot of credit for battling through early career adversity and becoming a reliable, dependable player for this team. While BC could use an extra weapon that can kick from 40+ yards next year, Knoll has certainly earned the right to continue kicking the shorter field goals and extra points.