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Giorgio Tavecchio Wins Cal Starting Kicking Job

After an intense battle to hold off freshman Jed Barnett, the Milanese-born kicker nailed down the spot to be kicking off the Golden Bears football season.

Cal coach Jeff Tedford said today that Giorgio Tavecchio has won both the field goal and kickoff job. He had previously said Tavecchio would handle field goals, but was taking a longer look at freshman Jed Barnett on kickoffs. But it turns out that Tavecchio clearly beat the competition in both areas. “We looked at Vince (D’Amato), we looked at Barnett, (David) Seawright had some chances through camp,” Tedford said. “Giorgio is clearly the most consistent.”

Tavecchio is probably the biggest curiosity to Cal fans. He has made some huge field goals down the stretch (most notably to beat both Arizona and Arizona State last season), but few of them have been outside 30 yards and it was often a frustrating adventure to line the kick up right for him to deliver it down the middle. Can new special teams coordinator Jeff Genyk get more out of him?