January 30, 2016 - Aaron Wilson
Wake Forest punter Alex Kinal making his mark at Senior Bowl
MOBILE, Ala. - A native of South Australia who grew up playing Aussie Rules football, Wake Forest punter Alex Kinal has taken well to the style of American football. The All-Atlantic Coast Conference punter is at the Senior Bowl all-star game along with Syracuse punter Riley Dixon. "I grew up in South Australia, basically saw a couple Aussie guys playing football in the NFL,"Kinal said. "I started really watching it and thought I'd give it a go. I put some film together. By Signing Day in 2011, I had a full ride to Wake It was a little bit of a shot in the dark, but thought I'd give it a go." Kinal ranked ninth nationally last season with a 41.3 net punting average. "Honestly, I think what kind of might stick out with my story is the fact I can deal with the unpredictable," Kinal said. "I enjoy exploring and seeing new things. I don't mind a challenge." Kinal had 32 punts inside opponents' 20-yard line to lead the ACC. His three touchbacks tied for the lowest in the conference. Kinal's selection marks the fifth consecutive year Wake Forest has had a player invited to the Senior Bowl, following Joe Looney, Tommy Bohanon, Michael Campanaro and Kevin Johnson. Johnson was the Houston Texans' first-round draft pick and started as a rookie. "Kevin's good," Kinal said. "I saw him a play a little bit, start at corner. He was one my gunners on the punt team, very reliable, great guy, very speedy, very shifty." "I met with the Texans briefly. I had a good meeting. It's informal, just a little bit of a chat. I talked to them a little bit about KJ. The teams want to know that I'm a football player." Follow me on Twitter: @AaronWilson_NFL Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.