Iowa kicker Keith Duncan named to BTN All-Decade Team

Duncan was a consensus All-American after a record-breaking junior season.


Shivansh Ahuja

Iowa kicker Keith Duncan makes a practice kick during a football game between Iowa and Iowa State at Jack Trice Stadium in Ames on Saturday, September 14, 2019. The Hawkeyes retained the Cy-Hawk Trophy for the fifth consecutive year, downing the Cyclones, 18-17. (Shivansh Ahuja/The Daily Iowan)

Robert Read, Sports Editor

After becoming a hero in his freshman season by kicking a game-winning field goal against No. 3 Michigan, Iowa kicker Keith Duncan went two seasons without even attempting a kick.

Now, after a record-breaking junior season, he’s been named to the Big Ten Network’s All-Decade Team.

“It’s crazy to think about,” Duncan said on BTN. “I’m just honored to be part of this team. There’s so many great kickers. So many great athletes and people as well out there on this team. So I’m very honored to be on this team and very thankful to BTN.”

Duncan is the fourth Hawkeye, and the only current one, to be named to BTN’s All-Decade first team. Duncan is one of only two current players on the entire team.

As a freshman, Duncan handled most of Iowa’s kicking responsibilities. His highlight of that season was the game-winner against Michigan, but he was solid the entire 2016 season.

The Weddington, North Carolina, native went 9-of-11 on field goals as a freshman and hit 38-of-39 PATs.

“Coming from North Carolina I had no idea where Iowa was,” Duncan said on BTN. “But the coaches said, ‘You’re going to have a chance to start.’ So I was hooked. I wanted to be here and I fell in love with the campus and the people the first day I was here. Freshman year went very well for me. I had a great support staff, great seniors and leaders, as well as coaches that made me feel comfortable.”

Going into his sophomore season, Duncan lost his starting spot to Miguel Recinos. He redshirted in 2017 and did not see any action in 2018 with Recinos as the starter.

“For me that was kind of a wake up call,” Duncan said on BTN. “I had to become more mature. It’s either you take the right path or you take the wrong path. Coming into this last season, again with the help of so many people, we were not only successful in the field goal department, but the whole team. We reached many goals and I was just happy to be a part of it.”

After Recinos graduated, Duncan beat out Caleb Shudak to reclaim his starting spot in 2019. And what a season it turned out to be.

Duncan finished his redshirt junior year having converted 29-of-34 field goals and all 32 of his PATs. The 29 field goals set the Iowa and Big Ten single-season records, and currently sits sixth all time in NCAA single-season history. Duncan led the nation in converted field goals.

Duncan was efficient in hitting kicks under difficult circumstances. He was 14-of-18 from 40 yards and beyond and 12-of-13 on attempts on the road.

For his 2019 season, Duncan was named a consensus All-American and the Bakken-Anderson Big Ten Kicker of the Year. He was a first-team All-Big Ten selection and a finalist for the Lou Groza Award.

Despite being named to the All-Decade Team, Duncan still has the opportunity to break more records as a senior next season. He succeeds, he said, by following his routine.

“Routine is huge to me,” Duncan said on BTN. “I’ve said multiple times that personally I don’t think I’m the best ability-wise kicker. I don’t have the strongest leg. But I will be perfect on my routine. I will focus on my routine on every single kick.”

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