This is the final installment in a series previewing the football positions for the 2014 high school football season. Arizona has become a kicking factory and this year there is a deep list of talented kickers and punters.
Top 10 kickers/punters:
No. 1 Blake Ruiz, Gilbert Williams Field, 5-8, 195, Sr.: Made 67 of 72 extra-point tries and 7 of 10 field goals, including a 51-yarder, last season. His younger brother, Brandon, a sophomore, is rated the No.1 kicker in the country for the 2017 class by Chris Sailer Kicking.
No. 2 Matt Aragon, Vail Cienega, 6-6, 200, Sr.: Not only big but has a big leg, to boot. He averaged 43.96 yards on 26 punts last season.
No. 3 Landon Whitlow, Mesa Desert Ridge, 6-2, 192, Sr.: One of the stronger legs in the state, Whitlow connected on a 50-yard field goal last season, and had a 49-yarder in a playoff game against Brophy Prep. Made eight of 12 field goals. He also made 61 of 70 points after touchdowns. Will be counted on to punt this year.
No. 4 John Abercrombie, Phoenix Mountain Pointe, 5-11, 150, Sr.: His third year kicking on varsity. Increased leg strength each year. Booms kicks into the end zone. Made 32 of 33 extra points and two field goals on state championship team last year.
No. 5 Colton Ketterer, Tempe Marcos de Niza, 6-1 160, Sr.: Consistent on field goals from 45 yards. Most of his kickoffs sail into the end zone. One of the more stronger, accurate legs in Arizona. Was ranked No.1 by Chris Sailer Kicking for his age group in Arizona.
No. 6 Cody McBride, Lakeside Blue Ridge, 5-11, 165, Sr.: Nearly automatic last season for the Division IV champions, making 44 of 46 extra points and 10 of 13 field goals. He had 11 touchbacks.
No. 7 Dylan Brown, Chandler Hamilton, 6-0, 160, Jr.: Kicked on varsity last season when he had a field-goal long of 46 yards. Also kicked a 43-yarder. Solid soccer player who is a big weapon on the football field inside the 40.
No. 8 Chris Sanchez, Scottsdale Chaparral, 6-2, 180, Sr.: This will be his first year kicking and punting on varsity, but he has been impressive in camp, booming balls into the end zone on kickoffs and making field goals from 50 yards out.
No. 9 Zach Glaess, Queen Creek, 5-10, 185, Jr.: Another versatile kicker who punts and plays cornerback. Glaess has a strong, accurate leg.
No. 10 Nathan Taylor, Phoenix Thunderbird, 6-0, 180, Jr.: Leg strength and accuracy have improved making him one of the more dangerous kickers beyond 40 yards in the state. Rated 12th in the country by Kohl’s for the 2016 class.
High school football preseason preparations: