One scouting service ranks Horn as the No. 2 kicker in the country.
If you’re perplexed about the Huskies’ recent struggles in the kicking game, you’re not alone.
“You’d think it’s not really hard,” Chris Petersen said Wednesday.
That was Petersen’s response when asked about his process for evaluating high-school kickers.
“Because that’s the one position that doesn’t change when they get here,” he continued. “But it seems to be hard. I mean, really, the snap’s the same, the hold’s the same, the speed of the game doesn’t change. I guess it’s the size of the stadiums that change that kind of making it more difficult (on kickers). And I think there is an adjustment period, for all these guys; we’ve kind of experienced that over the course of time, kickers included.”
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The Huskies have a kicker included in their 2019 recruiting class, and by all accounts they got a good one.
Tim Horn, out of Punahou High School in Honolulu, is 6 feet 2 and 206 pounds and rated as the No. 2 kicker in the nation by Chris Sailer Kicking.
In a competition featuring more than 300 kickers, Horn won the “overall” kicking championship during a Chris Sailer camp in Las Vegas in January. He went 8 for 8, with a long of 55 yards, to win the field-goal competition, and he “easily” won the kickoff challenge by averaging 70-plus yards with a 4.1-second hang time.
Horn was one of 20 recruits to sign with the Huskies on Wednesday.
“We’re excited about Tim. We really are,” Petersen said. “He’s got a really, really big leg and I think he’s super passionate about kicking. That’s one thing that really showed up. This guy is a tremendous worker and competitive. He’s been over here in our camp, and all the research — you can tell he’s just really focused on that.”
The kicking game has been a problem on multiple fronts for the Huskies the past two seasons.
Peyton Henry, a redshirt freshman walk-on, has been adequate in his first season as the primary kicker. He has converted 71.4-percent of his field-goal attempts (15 of 21), the sixth-best conversion rate in the Pac-12, with one notable miss, from 37 yards, in the closing seconds of regulation at Oregon.
He has struggled on kickoffs as the Huskies rank dead last in the Pac-12 in kickoff average, at 59.9 yards, and touchbacks (21 on 70 kickoffs).