Duke kickers struggle

Staff WriterAugust 21, 2010 

— Duke football coach David Cutcliffe said he's not trying to create a kicking controversy, but after watching Friday night's scrimmage, "there will be competition."

Returning starter Will Snyderwine made only one of three field goals - hitting from 32 yards but missing from 30 and 38 - while senior Nick Maggio connected from 20 yards out and missed from 55.

"I'm really disappointed in the kicking game," Cutcliffe said. "[It's] something that should be, and has been, a strength. We missed three game-winners in those situations, and it can't happen. We'll take a look at that. If you're asking me if that starts a competition at kicker, well, you have to say yes at this point in time. I didn't start the competition; they do that by performance."

Quarterback Sean Renfree connected on 12 of 23 passes for 163 yards and added a rushing touchdown.

Starting receivers Donovan Varner and Austin Kelly remained sidelined because of hamstring injuries, but the third starting wideout, Conner Vernon, caught four passes for 43 yards, while Tony Foster had four for 47 yards. Tight end Cooper Helfet injured his right foot on a 49-yard catch. Cutcliffe did not immediately have information on his status.

Duke will hold its fan day from 4-7 p.m. today. Practice is open at Wallace Wade Stadium for the first two hours, followed by an autograph session for the final hour.

robbi.pickeral@newsobserver.com or 919-829-8944

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