Thursday, June 11, 2015

2015 Season Countdown: #80 Kenny Allen

Kenny Allen (#91) with kicker Matt Wile
Name: Kenny Allen
Height: 6'3"
Weight: 220 lbs.
High school: Fenton (MI) Fenton
Position: Punter/kicker
Class: Redshirt junior
Jersey number: #91
Last year: I ranked Allen #68 and said he would be the backup punter. He punted 1 time for 51 yards.

For a few years, people have been talking about Allen as a capable punter. The walk-on is known for booming punts, but the problem reportedly comes down to consistency. He might boom one, shank the next, and go back and forth. With former All-Big Ten punter Will Hagerup a part of the equation, it was no surprise that Allen was mostly mired on the bench.

The job looked like it was about to open itself up to Allen with the graduation of Hagerup, as well as combo kicker/punter Matt Wile. And then along came Aussie Blake O'Neill, a Weber State graduate transfer. The new coaching staff has a slightly different special teams philosophy, and they found O'Neill, who has experience doing what the new staff wants. He has one year of eligibility remaining, so Allen is probably out of luck yet again. Allen will probably be O'Neill's backup, and while Allen has also been working on his placekicking, he is not expected to win that job, either. Allen does have experience holding on extra points and field goals, but there are a few guys who have experience there (including Shane Morris) and could presumably do the job just as well.

Prediction: Backup punter, kicker, and holder


  1. Thunder - if Allen remains a walk-on, and is again relegated to backup duties - do you see him sticking it out to see if he can breakthrough as a senior next year?

    Paying your own way, and seemingly never getting a shot is no fun. Been there, done that.

    1. O'Neill will be gone next year, so it will depend in part on if Michigan has a better option.

  2. Who is going to do kickoffs? I thought Allen was the favorite, as Andrew David isn't known for having a booming leg and O'Neill didn't do kickoffs at Weber State.

  3. With Baxter around and in a time where long snappers are given scholarships, I would view Allen's versatility as a significant asset to the football team's special teams. Be it as a holder or insurance at both kicking spot, he's a valuable member of the team. IMO, he's more important than a 4th RB, 7th WR, 6th LB, 4th QB, etc.

    1. Oh.. In your opinion. Might as well call Harbaugh then, because this kid needs a scholarship.

    2. Don't waste your breath - He already knows.