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Punting His Game--for Now

August 21, 1996|JIM HODGES

It will be another year, at least, before Chris Sailer can do all the kicking he wants. And playing college soccer is an even longer-term project.

Sailer is UCLA's punter, having won the job last season as a freshman and ranking 15th in the nation with a 42.2-yard average.

He also wants to kick the Bruins' field goals and kickoffs, which isn't likely to happen, this season anyway.

"I'm first string on one, second string on another and third string on the other," Sailer said, listing, in order, his positions as punter, kickoff man and field goal kicker.

Bjorn Merten and Greg Andrasick are back for place-kicking and kickoffs, but Sailer has credentials to handle all three jobs.

As a senior at Notre Dame Sherman Oaks High, he had seven field goals of 50 or more yards. He also played soccer--he was a defender--in the fall.

He wanted to play for the Bruin soccer team this season. "It just wouldn't work out," he said. "I would have been on planes all fall. The soccer team plays on Fridays and Sunday, and we play on Saturdays."


Tennessee, the Bruins' first opponent on Sept. 7, is on their minds at Spaulding Field. The defense is working against Volunteer plays, and the offense is taking a look at the Volunteer defensive scheme. . . . Defensive end Jason Nevadomsky will have shoulder surgery and be lost for the season. . . . Defensive end Vae Tata will redshirt because of an injured knee.

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