Kicker Hocker setting records for Hogs


FAYETTEVILLE — Quarterback Tyler Wilson and receiver Cobi Hamilton continued to rewrite Arkansas’ record books in last Saturday’s 38-20 loss at South Carolina.

Wilson passed former Razorback Clint Stoerner to set Arkansas’ career completions record. Hamilton eclipsed Jarius Wright’s single-season receiving yards mark.

But the duo had some other company in record-breaking performances.

Kicker Zach Hocker, in his third season, also set the school’s scoring record for kickers last week (285 points). Hocker passed former Arkansas All-American Steve Little, who amassed 280 points in his career.

Hocker spoke about his place in the record books, his overall performance as a junior and plans for 2013 during Arkansas’ weekly press conference on Monday.

Q: What did it mean to break Steve Little’s record?

A: “It was cool. Steve was one of the best in the books here. Honestly, I didn’t know that I broke it until after the game I was notified that I broke it. There had been some talk earlier in the week that I was getting close. It was one of those things that I was called on to kick two field goals and our field goal unit walked off the field with three points each time. I am thankful for that. Like Tyler (Wilson) was saying earlier, our main focus right now is just to win games and to perform when our number is called. Luckily enough that happened this past weekend and it will be a time that I will look back on one day and it will be cool to see. But as of right now we are just focused on winning games.”

Q: Tyler Wilson set a school record in the South Carolina game. Cobi Hamilton did, too. Is it disappointing the records came in a loss?

A: “Cobi and Tyler both performed very well this past weekend. It was disappointing to see our guys going out and setting records and putting up all these accolades for themselves but coming off the field with a loss. Just like last weekend it is disappointing but we have to keep carrying those performances over into next week against Mississippi State if we want to get a chance to win. It is disappointing to come off with a loss but we have to keep performing that way if we want to win.”

Q: Are you hoping to add punting to your list of duties next season?

A: “I first got here as a punter. That was my primary position being here and I would love to do all three next year. They will probably bring in a couple of guys to compete at the spot. But, me being an upperclassman and having some experience behind me, hopefully I will be able to win that spot out and be able to do all three next year.”

Q: Is there any concern about leg fatigue doing all three?

A: “I did it in high school and I know that in college there are a lot more reps. But doing it at practice, I go through the same routine as Dylan (Breeding) in a practice or on a game day. I think adding a couple punts here and there, two a game, I don’t think it will affect me that much. Just from building up the endurance on the technique and strategy throughout practice, hopefully it will carry over into where it won’t affect me that much if I end up doing all three.”

Q: What have you thought about your season as a whole?

A: “It’s not been my best season by any means. I’m not living up to the standards right now that I set out there for myself. But we have two more games left. I don’t want to miss again, especially if we want to win. … I had greater expectations for myself … but I can only look forward to not missing again the rest of this season.”

Q: Is there anything you can put your finger on for missing short attempts this year?

A: “That’s just one of those things. It’s not characteristic of me to go out there and miss a 26-yard field goal. I make they every day in practice with the team. I might have just been a little lackadaisical or not as focused. But I went out there and hit the ball exact same way every single time and looked up there hoping to see three points. Unfortunately, there have been two times this season where I’ve gone out and missed a 20-some-odd-yard field goal. It has been disappointing, but from now on I’m not going to do anything but go out and focus on the little details.”