The Big Ten released its all-conference teams this week and, as expected, there weren’t many Michigan State football players listed.
There were a number of honorable mentions, but only one player made the first or second teams.
And no, he wasn’t on offense or the defensive side of the ball.
On Wednesday, Ryan Eckley was named to the All-Big Ten second team, becoming the second straight Michigan State punter to make an all-conference team.
Eckley is following in the footsteps of Bryce Baringer who was the first punter selected in the 2023 NFL Draft and is currently starting for the New England Patriots.
And he’s just the latest in a long line of talented MSU punters.
Michigan State football has become ‘Punter U’
When you look at the punters Michigan State has had over the years, it would be very difficult to argue against the Spartans being ‘Punter U’.
The Spartans have fielded Baringer, Jake Hartbarger, Mike Sadler, and Brandon Fields, among others, over the years and they were all some of the best not only in the Big Ten but in the country during their time in East Lansing.
Eckley is just a redshirt freshman and he’s already putting up some crazy numbers. He averaged 46.7 yards per punt which compares favorably to Baringer’s first year as the full-time Michigan State punter. In fact, Baringer averaged just over 43 yards per punt in 2020 before improving that to over 48 as a junior in 2021.
It feels like Eckley is on track to become that next All-American punter in East Lansing.
It’s time to admit that Michigan State is ‘Punter U’.