Throughout his unusual journey from Middlebury College to Metlife Stadium, Seattle Seahawks kicker Steven Hauschka has had his fair share of doubters. However, he's also had his fair share of believers too. Maybe none more willing to vouge for his booming right leg than his former coach Bob Ritter.
"He had that combination of hard work, confidence and perseverance to make him a really good kicker," Ritter said.
The former Panther standout and all-time leader in field goals made is currently kicking his way into the NFL history books. One of the few players to go from playing Division III football to playing in the Super Bowl.
"It's exciting," Ritter said. "It's a testament to Steve's work ethic and determination that he's able to do this.
Much like the start to his college career, which began with soccer and not football, Hauschka bounced around the NFL and AFL for three seasons before finally building the confidence to become a fixture with the Seahawks. A bright light that has seen him go 33-of-35 on field goal attempts during the regular season and 6-6 in the postseason.
"He always talks about the process and how important it is to build consistency," Ritter said. "I think over the past two years he's proven that."
For Ritter and his players, Middlebury football has taken on a "12th Man" feel these days and Hauschka has been happy to take them all along for the ride.
"A few players joined him at the NFC Championship and he got to spend time with them," Ritter said. "He always remembers where he started and keeps in touch."
As for their super bowl attire.
"Blue and green without question," Ritter said. "I'm a Patriots fan but right now it's just go Hawks!
In Middlebury Dylan Scott Channel 3 Sports.
PO Box 4508