Oct 12, 2013; Seattle, WA, USA; Oregon Ducks kicker Alejandro Maldonado (41) kicks and makes the extra point against the Washington Huskies during the 1st half at Husky Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports

Oregon’s Alejandro Maldonado not deterred by kicking woes


Oregon Ducks kicker Alejandro Maldonado isn’t the most popular player amongst Oregon fans, but he’s doing his best to keep their criticisms from getting him down. Maldonado has missed some important kicks for the Ducks over the years, including a potentially game-tying kick against USC in 2011 and two 40-plus yarders against Stanford last season, but as he told The Oregonian recently, he can’t let his lack of success derail him:

You can’t give up, you can’t quit. Even when the grind is grinding on you, when every weight is on top of you, you got to find a way to lift it and keep moving forward. That’s the way I’ve been raised. It’s that simple, really. You have to keep working to get out of your hole.

 

I want to show I am this person, one who finishes. And that’s what I have to do: finish and trust my leg. When I tell myself that, it happens.

Maldonado and the Ducks will play the No. 5 Stanford Cardinal on Thursday night. If the game comes down to a field goal like it did last year, Maldonado will have the ultimate opportunity to redeem himself.

[Source: Oregon Live]

Tags: Oregon Ducks

  • mcloudyh .

    I get the pressure that FG Kickers undergo in the NCAA as a whole. However, Maldonado is a 40% kicker from 30-39 yds, and hasn’t hit one past that in two years. To put that in perspective if the Ducks are not closer than the 13 yd line, then they have a whopping 40% chance at best to connect on a FG. Given those odds it is better to go for it on 4th down in the Red Zone or even from the 35 yd line or closer. This inability to make critical FGs at any distance were significant contributions to two Oregon losses – not the only reasons though – everyone should remember the Black Mamba not staying back to block for Marcus against Stanford. The USC loss was a 37 yd Field goal (Oregon on the 20), Maldonado’s second FG miss vs Stanford was only a 41 yarder. These are routinely made by most FG kickers from most major programs. I am rooting for Maldonado, but if there was a decision to make between trusting the ball to Mariotta to get 7 or trusting Maldonado to kick it to get 3, then mathematically for Maldonado to connect on two out of two FGs in one game is 16%, he is 48% likely to make 3 points, and 36% likely to make NONE. Given Oregon’s red zone TD offense is 70%, and Oregon’s 4th down conversion rate is 40%, and that one TD is worth more than 2 FGs, then you would be making a mistake to not go for the bigger points given that Maldonado is not automatic. Although there are some assumptions in the above stats, Maldonado does not give Oregon their best chance to win. I have made the mistake in the past of tying these losses strictly to Maldonado, and that isn’t fair to Maldonado, there are many reasons why Oregon stumbled in both those games, but watching another bricked short range field goal in a crucial game would be painful for this Duck fan.