DiLallo hopes to improve consistency and confidence
With all of the struggles on the offensive side of the ball last season, it should really come as no surprise that punter Matt DiLallo saw extensive action for the Buffs, punting the ball 47 times and averaging 44.8 yards per kick.
Because of his performance, DiLallo, from Wellington, Fla., earned 2006 Freshman All-America honors, and now hopes to improve upon certain nuances to his kicking game this year.
“Consistency is probably the biggest thing I need to work on,” DiLallo said. “I need to be more confident in myself.”
From: Wellington, FL
2006 Freshman All-American
DiLallo, now a sophomore, still has three seasons ahead of him. He is currently competing with sophomore punter and friend Thomas Suazo but is expected to retain his job from a year ago.
The special teams last year was somewhat of a liability for the Buffs, with return-man Stephone Robinson muffing numerous punt returns and the once-automatic Mason Crosby successfully kicking only 20 out of 28 field goal attempts.
DiLallo, after practicing with starting kicker Kevin Eberhart, sees a smooth transition for not only himself but for Eberhart as well.
“Eberhart has just as big a leg (as Crosby), and he’d go back with Mason, go back 60 yards and still hit ’em,” DiLallo said.
While Crosby continually had his name in the headlines during his college career at CU, DiLallo knows seeing his name in the media usually would be considered a bad thing, like if he shanked a kick or muffed a snap.
“We (punters) are not on the field as much as the rest of the team,” DiLallo said. “It’s one play, just fourth down. I guess people just don’t pay attention.”
One man definitely paying attention last season was head coach Dan Hawkins. During DiLallo’s inconsistent periods towards the middle of the season, the often stern coach could be seen chewing out the freshman punter as he returned to the sideline.
As DiLallo continues to improve and gets more consistent and has better hang times, Hawkins and DiLallo will hopefully be talking under much more amicable circumstances this season.
Contact Evan Acker at firstname.lastname@example.org