Any coach worth his salt knows that you should never put the game in the hands—or on the foot—of a kicker.
Throughout the history of college football, there are countless examples of kicks gone wrong that cost a team the game. There are so many things that can happen during a field-goal attempt, and so many of the unpredictable outcomes are bad.
Kickers don't often cost a team the game, but when they do, it's always a big one.
The Crimson Tide still need to take care of Georgia in this weekend's SEC Championship Game, but if Alabama does punch its ticket to Miami to face Notre Dame, you can bet that points will be at a premium.
Alabama and Notre Dame are, after all, sitting one-two in scoring defense in the FBS (giving up just 9.3 and 10.3 points per game, respectively). Expect both Brian Kelly and Nick Saban to take points whenever they can, however they can—even if it means kicking.
But isn't Jeremy Shelley a perfect 10-of-10 this season on field goals, and 60-of-60 on extra points?
That's exactly the kind of streak that worries us.
Shelley has, over his entire career in Tuscaloosa, missed 11 field goals and three extra points. With such perfection on the line in what could be the biggest moment of his collegiate career, couldn't a missed attempt come due?
OK. So that's like kind of expecting to win the lottery because you lost the last 50 times you bought a ticket. But Shelley missing a crucial kick against Notre Dame is still a better bet than that Powerball ticket you have in your pocket.