He's majoring in exercise and sports science, and he's a surfer dude. (Alas, the waves aren't good in the mighty Mississippi.) He has a distinctly Australian accent and, by his coach's reckoning, a quirky personality.
"He's very laid back; he's hard to understand at times," Memphis coach Justin Fuente said. "But he's a competitor, a real athlete. He's got some toughness and some grit about him."
Other special-teams tidbits:
The Herd has punted 30 times this season, with Justin Haig booting it once from field-goal formation and Tyler Williams taking the other 29 attempts. At that rate, the Herd would need 251/3 games to match the Memphis punting load of 2011.
That swings both ways - Marshall's defense has forced foes into just 35 punts.
The punt return is almost becoming an endangered species, as Marshall has just 13 returns in those 35 punts. Andre Snipes-Booker and others have taken 10 fair catches, a product of the Herd's tendency to go for blocked kicks.
Still, MU's 8.7-yard average on punt returns is nearly double the opponents' 4.5 average, with foes held to 11 returns.
With three touchdowns against it, the Herd kickoff coverage team's net has risen, with opponents gaining the 29-yard line on average. Marshall's struggling return team is averaging the 24-yard line, a yard short of the new touchback spot. The Herd has kicked five touchbacks, compared to 17 against.
Reach Doug Smock at 304-348-5130 or dougsm...@wvgazette.com or follow him at twitter.com/dougsmock.