2012 Ray Guy Watch List: SEC Puts Its Best Foot Forward with LSU's Brad Wing

Barrett SalleeSEC Football Lead WriterJuly 11, 2012

LSU punter Brad Wing
LSU punter Brad WingStreeter Lecka/Getty Images

Punters take a lot a heat for not being "real football players."

That may be true in some cases, but it's not in the case of LSU punter Brad Wing.

Wing headlines a group of five SEC punters named to the Ray Guy Award watch list on Wednesday, which is given to the nation's top punter. That list also includes Arkansas' Dylan Breeding, Ole Miss' Tyler Campbell, Auburn's Steven Clark and Vanderbilt's Richard Kent.

If you're taking odds on who's going to win the award—and who doesn't gamble on winners of punting awards?—then Wing is the odds-on favorite to win.

As a freshman in 2011, Wing averaged 44.1 yards per punt. He also booted a 73-yard bomb against Alabama late in the first meeting in Tuscaloosa that turned the game around and kicked 18 punts more than 50 yards.

Of Wing's 59 punts in 2011, 27 were downed inside the 20-yard line and only five of them went into the end zone for touchbacks.

Wing's accolades as a punter can't be ignored, but the Melbourne, Australia native won over the public with his touchdown run on a fake punt vs. Florida. That touchdown was called back due to new rules which make celebration penalties live-ball fouls if they occur in the field of play.

While Wing is the favorite, keep an eye on Auburn punter Steven Clark as a dark horse.

Clark doesn't have the power that the top-tier punters, but distance isn't the name of his game. A total of 10 of his 72 punts were returned, he forced 34 fair catches, allowed three touchbacks and dropped 33 punts inside the 20-yard line in 2012.