Wes Byrum’s heroics notwithstanding, it’s interesting to see there’s one bit of conventional wisdom that may actually have some validity to it.
… But a study published in September by a University of San Diego professor has delivered the worst news of all to kickers: Icing works. Really, really well.
Nadav Goldschmied, an adjunct professor at the university’s psychology department, examined field goals over six seasons, 2002 to 2007. He identified 273 attempts that he considered “pressure” kicks, those attempted in overtime, or with one minute or less remaining in regulation when the kicking team was tied or trailing by 3 points or fewer.
Of the 163 field-goals attempted when a timeout was not called before the kick, 80.4 percent were successful. But in the 110 cases when the kicker was iced, the success rate dropped to 66.4 percent, a difference that Goldschmied — and probably every coach in the N.F.L. — considers significant.
I’d like to see what a similar study for college football presents. I can’t imagine that college kickers are less immune to pressure than their pro counterparts are. If anything, I’d expect the opposite.