November 15, 2009

Swenson makes case for Groza Award

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Michigan State kicker Bret Swenson was recently named a semifinalist for the Lou Groza Award, given annually to the nation's top collegiate kicker. At Purdue in his final road game as a Spartan, Swenson made a powerful case that he is worthy of the Groza Award.

The 5-foot-8, 185-pound Spartans senior tied a career high with four made field goals in the 40-37 victory. Two of Swenson's field goals were 52-yarders.

As a junior, Swenson had a number of clutch field goals including a game-winner in a memorable comeback against Wisconsin. The two 52-yard field goals were as clutch as any field goals Swenson has kicked during his career at Michigan State.

"He just kept us in the game with the field goals, two 52-yarders, four field goals," said Spartan coach Mark Dantonio. "Four for four on a day when we were sort of hanging on a little bit, keeps us close. He kind of kept us within four the whole time. In the game-winning field goal at the end he was ice."

Dantonio thought Swenson should have been a finalist for Lou Groza Award as a junior. The third-year Spartan coach expressed his views on Swenson's ability after his player's clutch performance at Purdue.

"Hopefully going 4-for-4 in a 40-37 game when there was pressure, and kicking 52-yard field goals in pressure like that, sets him up," Dantonio explained. "It's putting him on the cusp of being the all-time leading field goal kicker in this conference, which is a huge statement."

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