New Special Teams Coordinator Bob Ligashesky has already scored his first major recruiting victory. Kicker Andre Szmyt will return to Syracuse football for the 2022 season, he said on Saturday. Ligashesky was officially announced by Syracuse Athletics on Thursday, and now the most productive kicker in Orange history is back.
Previously, Szmyt participated in the Seniors Day festivities in the season finale, and it was announced that he will not be returning. Hiring Ligashesky may have changed his mind.
Szmyt is the program’s record holder for field goals, the most accurate kicker in school history and the most point-scoring kicker in program history. Szmyt won the Lou Groza Award in 2018, the first player in Syracuse history to win the country’s top kicker award each year.
Not bad for someone who joined the program as an accompanist.
Szmyt may have come to Syracuse as a substitute, but he won the starting kicker job after Cole Murphy graduated. He quickly became a constant weapon in special teams with his brilliant 2018 rookie campaign. Although Szmyt didn’t do as much in the years that followed, he still managed a high percentage of his field goal attempts. .
After the 2021 season, Szmyt has scored 159 of 163 extra points and 65 of 79 (82%) field goals during his career. In the 2018 Lou Groza Award-winning year, Szmyt scored 30 of 34 field goals, setting an academic record for most field goals achieved in a single season. In total, Szmyt has accumulated 354 points during his career including a program record of 151 in 2018.