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April 30th, 2013

Screen grab from Havard Rugland's Kickalicious video.

Now, we don’t normally call something news just because of a YouTube video — even if it’s been seen over 4 million times!

But when that YouTube video gets you a $1.5 million NFL contract … that’s news!

Norway’s Havard Rugland posted a video of himself a few months ago … kicking a football. Unbelievably accurately. And incredibly far. Onto a mountain top. Into a canoe. Through a basketball hoop. To a guy in a moving car.

And he’s never played football.

The Detroit Lions here in the U.S. saw his video … and called him over to see what he’s got. Other teams were interested too. The Lions end up  signing him to try out for the job as a place kicker.

He still has to duke it out against seasoned NFL kicker, David Akers, to see who’ll ultimately get the job.

Kickers are specialists who score field goals — from a spot on the ground (hopefully) through the goal posts. The farther you have to kick it from, the harder it is. Kickers don’t play in other parts of the game.

What’s Havard got going for him? His kicking is the real deal — not just a few lucky ones that made the video, or fancy editing. Field goals made from about 40 yards or longer are considered good. Havard Rugland accurately kicks 60 yards in the video. Some have compared his leg to a cannon.

What’s not going for him? That part before where he’s never played football.  But he’s working right now with NFL kickers to hone his technique.

Also, it’s one thing to make these incredible (and we mean INCREDIBLE) kicks for a video, relaxed with friends, in an open field. It’s quite another to do it with 300 pound guys running at you frothing at the mouth to take you down, with the clock running down, in front of millions of people, on national television, with a Super Bowl at stake! No pressure.

So, we’ll see how it goes. What we do know is that every classroom we presented this story to  … got a real kick out of it.

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10 Comments on “Kickalicious!”

  • Jamie says:

    Have you played soccer? How do you kick from that angle? How much do you practice?

  • Taylor says:

    The veteran has to be considered the favorite over a guy who has no prior football experience, but the idea of a guy earning a job in the NFL thanks in large part to a YouTube video feels like an almost too perfect statement of our time.

  • Rachelle says:

    The video has been viewed more than 2.5 million times since it was posted in September 2012.

  • Bryce says:

    The video shows the 27-year-old performing some outrageous tricks and kicks, from nailing 60-yard field goals to soccer-style scissor kicks and volleys with American footballs.

  • Neva says:

    Kicking a football into a canoe waiting off shore? Or into the arms of a passenger in a passing car? Or ringing a trash can … over his back shoulder?

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