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The Feats of Mike Doan : CSUN Kicker Has Toehold on 2 WFC Records and the Lead in Scoring by Foot

<i> Times Staff Writer </i>

Mike Doan is a rarity among placekickers if for no other reason than that his foot has never touched a soccer ball--and you don’t need a Berlitz course to say his name.

There are other distinguishing factors.

“He doesn’t have the normal psychological makeup of a kicker,” said Cal State Northridge Coach Bob Burt.

In other words, he has both oars in the water.

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But is Doan truly an exception?He was asked if the tales of kickers being a rather peculiar lot were greatly exaggerated.

“No, I don’t think it’s a myth,” he said. “I’ve been around a lot of other kickers, and most of them were pretty weird.”

And few are as successful as the senior with the crew-cut hair from Mater Dei High in Santa Ana.

Doan leads the Western Football Conference in kick scoring with 71 points.

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In a 34-0 Northridge victory over Portland State on Saturday, Doan tied WFC records with four field goals and 14 kicking points.

He would have set both records if Northridge had not accepted a penalty that nullified a 46-yard field goal.

It was the second time this season Doan had a long field goal erased after a penalty kept a touchdown drive going. This time, though, it was Doan’s own fault. After the kick, Doan was bumped by a Portland defender and threw himself to the ground. His dramatic effort got Northridge a roughing call and a first down.

Last week he upset at least one opponent. On a third-quarter play in which Doan faked a PAT kick and Northridge scored a two-point conversion, a Portland linebacker grabbed Doan by the face mask and tried to throw him like a discus.

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Doan has been a slow starter throughout a collegiate career that began at Golden West College in Huntington Beach. He missed his first two attempts for Northridge last season, but rebounded to make 16 of his last 21 attempts and was selected first-team all-conference.

He missed his first two attempts this season, too, but is 13 for 14 since and has hit nine in a row.

“The toughest time for a kicker is to come back after a miss,” Doan said. “When things are going good, everything clicks.”

Doan’s success is shared by his holder, backup quarterback Danny Fernandez, and his long-snapper, John (Turtle) Dickman, who he brought with him from Golden West.

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“It helps when you never have to worry about the hold or the snap,” Doan said. “The ball is always there. I never think twice about it.”

Doan has seen to it that when Fernandez and Dickman aren’t around, he can practice anytime.

He invented the “Porta-Football-Holder,” a gadget that looks like a crude draftsman’s compass. He made it from scrap metal he found at his father’s welding and pipe-fitting supply store.

It also has been an extra source of income. Doan sent out brochures to high schools around the state, and has sold about 100.

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Not bad considering he hasn’t had much time to market the product. He’s concentrating on schoolwork and Northridge’s quest for the conference championship.

The Matadors (8-2) are tied for first place with Cal State Sacramento, who they play Saturday.

Doan has already won one game for Northridge with a last-second extra point. He said he wouldn’t mind if the team’s championship hopes rested on one of his kicks.

“I’d love it,” he said. “It doesn’t matter to me how we win it. As long as we win it.”

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MIKE DOAN’S FIELD-GOAL EFFICIENCY

Range Made/Att. 19 yards and less 0 for 1 20 to 29 yards 3 for 3 30 to 39 yards 2 for 4 40 to 45 yards 5 for 5 45 yards and over 3 for 3

NOTES . . .

Has made 32 of 33 extra points.

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Broke school record and tied conference mark with 14 kicking points against Portland St.

Is 10 of 10 on field goals from 40 yards and out but had two nullified when CSUN accepted penalties to get first down.


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