For his performance versus Notre Dame on Saturday, Georgia placekicker Rodrigo Blankenship has been named the SEC Special Teams’ Player of the Week.
Blankenship was a perfect 3-for-3 on field goals which included a 40 and 43-yarder and he also hit both PATs. Those 11-points helped secure UGA’s 23-17 win over a 7th-ranked Notre Dame Fighting Irish team on Saturday night. He also hit 5 of 6 his kickoffs into the endzone or through the back of it for touchbacks. The one kickoff that did not go for a touchback was a squib kick in the 3rd-quarter.
This marks the second time this season that Blankenship has been named SEC Player of the Week and the fourth time in his career. He earned the honor after his performance versus Vanderbilt in Georgia’s season-opening win, 30-6, over the Commodores where he was 3-for-3 on field goals and 3-for-3 on PATs. He was also named Player of the Week last year versus South Carolina and during his redshirt freshman season in 2016 for his performance versus Kentucky.
Affectionately known as “Hot Rod,” Rodrigo Blankenship has become a fan favorite for not only his on the field performance but also his helmet-wearing interviews. A senior, in his fifth year at Georgia, he was a preferred walk-on out of Sprayberry High School in Marietta, GA on UGA’s 2015 team. He redshirted that 2015 season but would appear in 13 games for the Bulldogs the following year as a redshirt freshman in 2016 where he was named to the SEC All-Freshman team. Blankenship won the starting placekicker duties for the 2017 season and was awarded a full athletic scholarship before the Notre Dame game, Georgia’s second of that season. He appeared in and started all 15 games for the Dawgs in 2017 at placekicker, and last season, he appeared in and started in all 14 games.
Blankenship is currently third in the school’s history in all-time career scoring with 358 points. He has made 61 of 72 field-goal attempts which puts him first all-time in school history in field-goal percentage with 84.7% Of his 275 kickoffs, 194 have gone for touchbacks. Blankenship also holds the school record for consecutive PATs with 175 so far.
A Lou Groza Award Watch List and Wuerffel Trophy Watch List candidate for 2019, Rodrigo Blankenship has been a perfect 8-for-8 on field goals and 21-for-21 on PATs this season. On kickoffs, the placekicker has booted 25 of his 29 attempts into the end zone or through the back of the end zone for touchbacks.