Michigan State football starting kicker Matt Coghlin returning for sixth season

Chris Solari, Detroit Free Press
·2 min read

Matt Coghlin is coming back to Michigan State football. Again.

The kicker announced via Twitter on Wednesday he plans to take advantage of the extra year of eligibility and return for his sixth season in East Lansing. He joins fellow fifth-year senior defensive end Drew Beesley in confirming he will use the bonus year, while defensive end Jacub Panasiuk also is expected to return this fall for his fifth season.

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Coghlin has been the Spartans’ starting place-kicker the past four seasons and is among the program’s all-time leaders in a number of categories.

Michigan State place kicker Matt Coghlin celebrates after kicking the go-ahead field goal during the second half of MSU's 29-20 win over Northwestern at Spartan Stadium on Saturday, Nov. 28, 2020.
Michigan State place kicker Matt Coghlin celebrates after kicking the go-ahead field goal during the second half of MSU's 29-20 win over Northwestern at Spartan Stadium on Saturday, Nov. 28, 2020.

The 5-foot-9, 195-pound Cincinnati native ranks first in point-after percentage, making 107 attempts, and sits fourth in field-goal percentage (75.3%), second in field goals made (64) and third in field goals attempted (85).

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Coghlin, who scored a rushing touchdown on a trick play at Indiana in 2018, became the fifth MSU player to top 300 career points this fall (305) and booted his fourth game-winning field goal in a 29-20 upset of No. 13 Northwestern. He went 9 of 12 on field-goal attempts on the season, including a career-long 51-yarder in the Spartans’ upset of 27-24 upset of No. 14 Michigan in Week 2.

Coghlin also assumed kickoff duties in 2020. He had nine touchbacks on 25 kickoffs.

MSU true freshman Jack Olsen, who did not play but traveled to a few road games, appears to be waiting his chance. He was one of the nation’s top place-kicking prospects in the 2020 recruiting class.

Contact Chris Solari: csolari@freepress.com. Follow him on Twitter @chrissolari. Read more on the Michigan State Spartans and sign up for our Spartans newsletter.

This article originally appeared on Detroit Free Press: Michigan State football kicker Matt Coghlin returning for sixth season