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WHITEHEAD GRANTED SIXTH YEAR OF ELIGIBILITY


Indiana Punter Haydon Whitehead - IU Athletics Photo

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Indiana fifth-year senior punter Haydon Whitehead has been granted a sixth year of athletic eligibility from the NCAA, head coach Tom Allen announced. Whitehead will earn his SPEA management degree in December and will return for the 2020 season. A three-time Ray Guy Award candidate (2017-19), Whitehead has landed an FBS-high 36.1 percent (13-of-36) of his punts inside the 10-yard line in 2019. The Melbourne, Australia, native is averaging a career-high 41.9 yards with 17 inside the 20 (47.2 percent), 13 inside the 10 and three inside the 5 (7.2), to go along with a career-best six 50-plus yarders, including a career-long 65-yarder. Only two of Whitehead's 36 punts have resulted in a touchback, 17 have resulted in a fair catch (47.2) and just five have been returned (13.9). Whitehead holds a 40.7 career average with 15 50-yarders in addition to 68 punts inside the 20-yard line (39.5), 34 inside the 10 (19.8) and 13 inside the 5 (7.5). The 24-year old played Australian Rules Football for 15 years. He made his first trip to the United States when he took his official visit to IU in December 2016. Whitehead trained under Nathan Chapman and John Smith at Prokick Australia in Melbourne. Indiana Head Coach Tom Allen on Whitehead: "Huge news for us. We were expecting that, but you never know until you get the official word. That's very important for us to have him. The year he's having, not just a great job as a punter – from a technical perspective and execution – but just his leadership and his work ethic, the way he does everything everyday is just a huge part of the culture that we're building. I don't know if I've ever had a specialist work at his level. (Nathanael) Snyder is probably a close second. Two guys who have physically worked in that weight room and it affects everyone in that weight room. Haydon continues to be part of what we're building here."

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