The Mr. Football Kicker of the Year award goes to the best kicker in the state of Tennessee regardless of classification. It is voted on by sportswriters from across the state. I think that they did a great job with the 3 finalists this year. Obviously there are always some omissions but there are some strong candidates this year in Corey Fatony (Franklin HS), Laszlo Toser (Ooltewah HS) and Thomas Garrison (Columbia Academy).
I am not as familiar with Thomas Garrison since I haven’t trained him but Corey Fatony & Laszlo Toser are Wilhoit Clients that participated in my Training Program this past Spring. Both Corey and Laszlo have had fantastic seasons and are much deserving of being finalists for the award. Corey has a 42.5 yard punting average, 6/9 field goals & kicked 81% of his kickoffs for touchbacks. Laszlo has had one of the best seasons in Tennessee High School history as he was 15/19 on field goals with a long of 52 yards, while going through at least 3 holders during the season. Also, he has kicked 92% of his kickoffs in the endzone for touchbacks. Both of these specialists have had phenomenal seasons.
The award has a special place for me because it was made the year after I graduated from high school. I always thought that it was unfair that I didn’t get a Mr. Football Award and just last year I was told by a prominent sportswriter that the Kicker of the Year Award was made because the sportswriters agreed that I should have gotten an award. They decided that a kicker needed to be honored every year. It made me proud to know that at some small level I was responsible for the awards inception.
Last year Baylor kicker Rafael Gaglianone won the award and is now starring at Wisconsin as a freshman. The two other finalists were Gary Wunderlich (Ole Miss) and Aaron Medley ( Tennessee). The state of Tennessee has some incredible kicking talent and I am proud that 5 of the last 6 finalists for this award are Wilhoit kickers!