Smith, Perkins shining at college level

Sep. 27—LAKE CHARLES, La. — McNeese State University redshirt freshman kicker Garrison Smith was rewarded for his perfect kicking in the Cowboys' 32-17 win over Mississippi College on Sept. 24.

A 2021 Norwalk graduate, Smith was named the Louisiana Sports Writers Association Special Teams Player of the Week, the organization announced on Monday.

The Ohio State transfer connected on both extra points and made a career-long 42-yard field goal against the Choctaws. On six kickoffs, five went for touchbacks. The 42-yarder was the longest made field goal for the Cowboys since the 2021 spring season, spanning 15 games.

For the season, Smith is 8 for 8 on PATs and 4-for-5 on field goal attempts. He currently leads the team with 20 points scored. His four made field goals through four games, is just two short of the six total made all of last season.

In addition, Smith has been dominant on kickoffs, pinning 16 of his 17 for touchbacks. Those numbers have helped the Cowboys to the No. 1-ranked KOR defense in the Southland Conference, and fifth in the Football Championship Subdivision at 13 years allowed per kick return.

So far this season, Smith is ranked No. 1 in the SLC and 28th in FCS with one field goal made per game. He's ranked No. 2 in the SLC and 27th in the FCS with making 80 percent of his field goals.

The Cowboys return to action on Saturday when they visit UIW to begin Southland Conference play. Kickoff is scheduled for 6 p.m. and the game will broadcast live on ESPN+.

Perkins among Big 12's best

AMES, Iowa — Freshman punter Tyler Perkins is off to a solid start through the first month starting for the Iowa State Cyclones (3-1).

On 13 punt attempts, Perkins, a 2022 St. Paul graduate, holds a 44.1 average — which is third in the Big 12 and just 0.7 yards away from the top average in the league.

On Sept. 23 in a 31-24 loss to No. 17 Baylor, Perkins had a 61-yard punt in the third quarter, which was downed at the Baylor 7-yard line. He punted four times in the game for an average of 48.3 yards per kick.

Perkins also had a 52-yard punt at Iowa on Sept. 10 and a 53-yard punt vs. Ohio on Sept. 17.

For the season, six of his 13 punts have been downed inside the opponents' 20-yard line.

Perkins currently ranks 19th in the FBS

He is 19th in FBS NCAA Division I in "boom rating," which is a special scaled formula that factors net yards per kick, the line of scrimmage, and proximity to each end zone.