Leesburg kicker hopes to win Gators starting job - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Leesburg kicker hopes to win Gators starting job

August 8, 2005

Leesburg - The Florida Gators are holding their first practice of the 2005 season today in Gainesville.

 New Gators head coach Urban Meyer has a lot of big decision to make during the month of August.

One of which is deciding who will succeed Matt Leach at placekicker.

Former Lee County High standout Chris Hetland is number one on the Gator depth chart at place kicker.

But he knows that the coaching staff is planning to give ture freshman Jonathan Phillips, who is on scholarship, a long look during camp.

Chris Hetland remembers he was given a one day tryout three years ago.

The pressure got to the then true freshman who lost the job to Matt Leach who of course went became an all-conference kicker for the Gators.

After getting redshirted in 2002, Chris Hetland was Leach's backup kicker the last two years where he has handled a few kickoff duties.

He hopes his experience will help him win a job he has been dreaming about since he was a little kid.

Chris Hetland said "It just helps to be out there in front of the crowd, even if you don't, like I didn't get play a whole lot but I got the opportunity to start in the Outback Bowl which helped me a lot. Just to know what it is like to know what it is like to be out there in that environment because it is just totally different, nothing you could ever imagine."

The Urban Meyer era at Florida starts on September third when the Gators host Wyoming. ]

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