28 December 2008
Alabama has invited kicker Jeremy Shelley
of Broughton High School in Raleigh, NC to walk-on next year. Shelley has kicked and punted in high school, and his father has indicated in articles that most schools would like him to compete at both positions.
He hit 26 of 37 FG attempts in his career, with a long of 50. He also registered 37 touchbacks, 18 of which came during his senior season. According to the folks at kicking.com
he already kicks off of the ground, which should make his transition easier.
As a punter he increased his junior average of 36.0 yards per game to a booming 43.5 on 18 attempts as a senior. Of those 18 attempts, 12 were downed inside the 20. The kicking.com guys claim he only takes two steps on his punts, which is also an indication that his transition could be easier.
He's been named Academic All-Conference twice, and will likely be so again in 2008. He looks like a very solid prospect, and could compete for playing time in 2010 when both Leigh Tiffin and PJ Fitzgerald have completed their eligibility.
There is no official word on whether is a recruited or non-recruited walk-on. I would think that the invitation would indicate that he was recruited, but each case is reviewed individually by the NCAA to determine if the player will count towards the 85 scholarship limit. Having said that, if he never receives any financial aid from the University of Alabama, he will not count towards the 85.