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College Football Draft Kit: 2012 K Rankings

Mario Puig

Mario Puig

Mario sets the direction of RotoWire's college football and NFL draft content, with his other responsibilities primarily resting in those same subjects. He's a fan of Jim Harbaugh, James Harrison and David Bowie.

1. Matt Weller, Ohio

This is Weller’s fourth year as the starting placekicker, and his production his first three seasons has been notable. He's averaged 25.7 field-goal attempts per season and has converted 74 percent of his opportunities. He had a career-year in 2011, as he made 25-of-34 field-goal attempts (73.5 percent), while converting 48-of-49 extra-point attempts.

2. Matt Hogan, Houston

Entering his fourth season as Houston's placekicker, Hogan benefits from a dynamic Houston offense. With Case Keenum at quarterback for most of his first three years, Hogans' PATs were off the charts, especially last season, when he made 91-of-92 attempts. This year might be different, however. With Keenum gone. the offense will still produce, but last year's extra-point production likely will drop. Still, Hogan remains an elite fantasy kicker.

3. Mathew Sims, Northern Illinois

Northern Illinois has been a hotbed for field-goal kickers in recent years. Huskies kickers tend to attempt high volumes of both field goals and extra points. Sims attempted 28 field goals last season, hitting 20 (71.4 percent), and made 64-of-66 extra-point attempts. In 2010, Northern Illinois kickers attempted 30 field goals and 67 extra points. This trend seems likely to carry into 2012, and if it does, that means an accurate Sims could have notably high value.

4. Michael Hunnicutt, Oklahoma

Hunnicutt had a fabulous freshman season for a Sooners team that usually produces a high volume of field-goal attempts. Hunnicutt made 21-of-24 field goals in 2011 (87.5 percent). On top of that, he attempted 56 extra points, hitting 55. The Sooners offense should be just as strong in 2012 and continue to provide plenty of scoring opportunities. Oklahoma kickers have been notably consistent in their field-goal attempts from year-to-year in recent seasons, attempting 28 field goals last season, 29 in 2010 and 28 in 2009. Add it all up, Hunnicutt enters 2012 as an elite fantasy kicker.

5. Zach Hocker, Arkansas

Hocker was one of the nation's best fantasy kickers in 2011 and likely will be again in 2012. He made 55-of-57 PATs, adding 21 field goals on 27 attempts. With quarterback Tyler Wilson back and Knile Davis (ankle) back after missing 2011, the Razorbacks should remain strong on offense.

6. Chandler Catanzaro, Clemson

Cantanzaro improved in his second season as Clemson's kicker in 2011. As a freshman in 2010, he made only 14-of-22 field goal attempts (63.6 percent). However, last season Cantanzaro was a consistent 22-for-27 (81.5 percent), above average in the ACC. Clemson’s offense will probably be just as explosive in 2012, making Catanzaro one of the nation’s best fantasy kickers on paper.

7. Quinn Sharp, Oklahoma State

Sharp's junior season was his first as the full-time kicker in Stillwater. He was impressive in benefiting from Mike Gundy’s dynamic offense, making 79-of-80 extra-point attempts. Sharp was also efficient in his field-goal attempts, converting 22-of-25 (88 percent). Brandon Weeden and Justin Blackmon are gone, and the offense can't possibly be as good in 2012 as it was in 2011. That means 80 extra-point attempts for this season is probably a long shot. The Cowboys offense still stands to be strong in 201, though, and Sharp remains of the nation's top kickers.

8. Andre Heidari, USC

Heidari impressed as a freshman last season, connecting on 15-of-17 field-goal attempts and making all 50 of his PATs. With Heisman hopeful Matt Barkley returning at quarterback and a notable young receiving corps, USC's passing game should offer Heidari plenty of scoring opportunities. Even if he doesn't get many field-goal attempts, Heidari should see sufficient PATs for fantasy purposes.

9. Casey Barth, North Carolina

Barth was the placekicker for the Tar Heels from 2008 to 2010, but missed last year due to injury. He should be one of the country's best kickers this year after hitting 21-of-25 field goals (84 percent) and 19-of-22 field goals (86.4 percent) in 2010. North Carolina will also score often, meaning Barth could end up getting himself a fair share of extra-point makes.

10. Dustin Hopkins, Florida State

The Seminoles senior enters 2012 as a four-year starter in Tallahassee. He contributed to a potent Florida State offense in 2011, converting 22-of-27 field-goal attempts (81.5 percent) and all 44 of his extra-point attempts. Hopkins has been relatively consistent in his career. As a sophomore, he hit 22-of-28 field-goal attempts (78.6 percent) and made all 53 of his extra-point attempts. Florida State should be strong in all three phases of the game this year, making Hopkins one of the nation's best fantasy kickers.

11. Andrew Furney, Washington State

Furney converted 14-of-16 field-goal attempts a year ago as a sophomore. His fantasy value is on the upswing as 2012 approaches because new coach Mike Leach is one of the most gifted offensive minds in college football. His arrival means Washington State should light up the scoreboard this season, which makes Furney a worthy fantasy pick.

12. Jeremy Shelley, Alabama

The presence of Cade Foster is a concern, but given that Foster made just 2-of-9 field goal attempts last year, Shelley should be relatively safe as Alabama's top kicker this year. Shelley made 21-of-27 field goals in 2011, adding 52 PATs on 54 attempts. His numbers figure to take a slight step back since the Crimson Tide defense likely will regress and running back Trent Richardson is no longer around, but Shelley is still a justifiable fantasy kicker.

13. Maikon Bonani, South Florida

This is Bonani's fourth season as the starting kicker for the Bulls. He has been relatively accurate in his career, making 51-of-68 field goal attempts (75 percent). With South Florida’s scoring offense, he also gets his fair share of extra-point attempts, kicking making all 42 last season. In 2011, Bonani attempted 26 field goals and made 19 (73.1 percent), so if he continues to get the same type of production, he'll have value in 2012.

14. Drew Alleman, LSU

Alleman took over full-time kicking duties for the first time in his junior season last year. He was quite accurate, converting 16-of-18 field-goal attempts (88.9 percent) and 62-of-63 extra points. Tigers kickers tend to benefit from large extra-point attempt totals, which should continue this season. On top of that, red-zone opportunities will probably be there for Alleman, as well.

15. Jordan Williamson, Stanford

As a sophomore last season, Williamson converted 13-of-19 field-goal attempts. With the departures of Andrew Luck and Coby Fleener, Stanford's offense is expected to take a step backward this year. However, Williamson could put up solid scoring numbers if the Cardinal remains one of the nation's higher scoring teams.

16. Brett Baer, Louisiana-Lafayette

The Ragin' Cajuns had a prolific offense last season, and Baer benefited. He converted 46-of-50 extra-point attempts and made 18-of-20 field-goal attempts (90 percent). Baer has a history of being accurate, as he converted all seven of his field-goal attempts as a sophomore in part-time duties. Baer's strong 2011 season and the return of star Lafayette quarterback Blaine Gautier should mean good things for Baer this season.

17. Anthony Cantele, Kansas State

Cantele had a solid year during Kansas State's unexpectedly strong 2011, converting 17-of-23 field-goal attempts (73.9 percent) and making 48-of-49 extra-point attempts. With most of the main pieces returning to the Wildcats offense, Cantele could get a similar amount of opportunities in 2012.

18. Jeremiah Detmer, Toledo

In limited action as a freshman last year, Detmer connected on 5-of-6 field-goal attempts for Toledo. He will be the starting kicker entering this season, so his production will increase. If Detmer continues to kick at an 83 percent clip, he will put up some noteworthy numbers for a Toledo team that has a reliably strong offense from year to year.

19. Kevin Harper, Pittsburgh

Harper wasn't particularly accurate last season, making only 67.7 percent of his field-goal attempts, but Pittsburgh's style of offense helps his value. New coach Paul Chryst leads a ball-control offense that lends itself to good field-position management, which should bring Harper into field-goal range frequently.

20. Tyler Bitancurt, West Virginia

Bitancurt made 16-of-22 attempts last season and converted 61 PATs as a part of West Virginia' high-powered spread offense. With Geno Smith throwing to a receiving corps that includes standouts Stedman Bailey and Tavon Austin, West Virginia is expected to score plenty of points despite the move to the Big 12. Bitancurt is one of the more valuable fantasy kickers nationwide heading into 2012.