Hogan’s time at UH memorable for fans, coaches
After recruiting Matt Hogan, head coach and former special teams coach Tony Levine knew the place-kicker had the clutch gene before he made a game-winning kick.
“In 2009 he was a redshirt freshman walk-on, not on scholarship and we were on the road at Tulsa on National TV with three seconds left. As soon as I said field goal and sent the team on the field I took my headset off, handed it to our manager and said, ‘We just won the game,’” Levine said.
Levine was correct. Hogan’s leg lifted UH to a 46-45 victory over Tulsa.
“Everything is mental. I didn’t believe it when I started but afterwards once you get down on yourself everything goes wrong,” Hogan said.
Kickers must handle immense pressure and garner the confidence necessary to make a game-changing kick.
“If you think right before a kick that you’re not going to make it, it’s not going to go through. I always say I’m going to make everything.”
It helps when your head coach believes in your ability.
“Hogan is one of the best in the country. Unfortunately, he’s now a senior. I feel like if we get past the opponents’ 40-yard line we’re in his range and you have three points,” Levine said.
Special teams coach, Jaime Christian said having a veteran kicker makes his job easier.
“Not just Hogan, but all the specialists when I got here allowed me to concentrate on scheme,” Christian said.
Hogan is among the most accomplished kickers in the nation.
The redshirt senior is 139 points shy of the all-time leader in points in NCAA history, second to Kyle Brotzman of Boise Street who owns the NCAA record with 439 career points. Last season Hogan scored 130 points. With a slight uptick in points scored, UH will have a record-breaking kicker.
Hogan is entering his fifth season as a Cougar football player. He graduated last May with a bachelor’s degree in business. Hogan is working towards a master’s degree and says he hopes to hold a career in the sports industry.
He has seen the team and the University at different stages of their development and has formed a lasting relationship with Levine.
“UH has gotten a lot bigger, growing as a family. It’s nice to be around these guys and Tony Levine. The coach who recruited me is now the head coach. He’s kind of like a friend, and a father figure, and a mentor in my eyes,” Hogan said.
Hogan’s career has come full circle; for the second time, Hogan’s brother doubles as a teammate. The Hogans first played together in high school. Matt was a senior, while Andy was a freshman.
On the heels of a 13-1 season, Matt Hogan said he hopes the program will continue to grow and as an alumni, he can watch his brother play.
“I think it’s special for the Hogan family and their parents to see both sons on the field together at the same time,” said Levine.