A ‘Leg’ Up: Irish riding the leg of Spencer Shrader

Published: Sep. 22, 2023 at 10:23 PM EDT
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SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - When Notre Dame rolled out Spencer Shrader for a 54-yard field goal at NC State, it wasn’t just blind faith.

In fact, this coaching staff says they’ve seen him hit from even further away.

“I have confidence Spencer can make a 60-yard field goal because I’ve seen him do it in practice,” said head coach Marcus Freeman.

“We don’t sit there and try to put a specific number on it, but he’s perfectly capable,” said special teams coordinator Marty Biagi. “He’s kicked all the way back to 60, 65 yards… even a little further.”

The grad transfer from South Florida took that confidence and ran with it, etching his name into the Fighting Irish history books with the longest field goal in program history.

“That was a really cool moment,” Shrader said. “Very, very blessed to have the privilege of having a record like that at such a prestigious university. The individual achievement’s great, but it’s doing something for the team and for the guys around me — that’s what makes it so special.”

Don’t let his 50% hit-rate so far this season fool you. Two of his three missed tries have also been from record-breaking range.

“He barely missed the 56-yarder. And if you watch it, he hit it almost above half of the field goal posts,” Freeman explained. “So, plenty of leg. I don’t know how far that equates out to, somebody that can do the geometry and stuff and measure angles can tell you how far that ball would have went. But it was really good to see. He’s got a huge leg.”

And in a game this week against Ohio State that’s expected to come down to the wire, three points could make all the difference.