Michigan State may rely on backup QB for kicking duties after injury to punter
Michigan State head coach announced that punter Jake Hartbarger will miss the next six to eight weeks of the season after suffering a bone bruise and possible fracture in Saturday’s game against Arizona State.
That means the Spartans will rely on freshman place kicker Tyler Hunt or backup quarterback Rocky Lombardi for punting duties. Head coach Mark Dantonio made the statement at his weekly press conference on Tuesday.
Jake Hartbarger out 6-8 weeks with bone bruise and possible fracture. Rocky Lombardi or Tyler Hunt to punt.
— Chris Solari (@chrissolari) September 11, 2018
Hartbarger has played in every game for the Spartans since 2015 and has totaled 186 punts in his career. In 2015, he averaged 42.7 yards per punt, ranking fourth in the B1G.
Last season, Hartbarger posted a 41.9-yard average, tied for seventh-best in the league.
Dantonio did not specify whether Lombardi or Hunt had the lead for the punting duties at the moment, but with Michigan State entering a bye week, there’s plenty of time for both to make their case.