June 29, 2007

Cats offer S.C. punter

The punting game has become an albatross around Northwestern's neck over the last few years. The Wildcats finished last in the Big Ten in punting in 2004 and 2005, and 10th last season, and the punting job is wide open for 2007 as three inexperienced punters will vie for the starting role.

But this week, the Cats offered a punter they hope will improve that part of their game in the future.

Jimmy Howell of Florence (S.C.) West Florence is listed as a pro-style quarterback in the Rivals database, but the Wildcats offered the 6-foot-6, 239-pounder as a punter after he impressed them with his thunderous boots at a Northwestern camp on June 4-5. Howell was blown away when Northwestern head coach Pat Fitzgerald called him a few weeks later to extend him his first, and thus far only, offer.

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