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35 DAYS TO (TENTATIVE) 2020 KICKOFF: Taiten Winkel

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In which BracketCat counts down the 35th day until the 2020 kickoff with a profile of Kansas State kicker/punter Taiten Winkel.

#35 Blake Richmeier
Blake Richmeier (35) has graduated and left his jersey number available for an unlikely recipient — a JUCO kicker and punter named Taiten Winkel.
Photo by Peter G. Aiken/Getty Images

Disclaimer: As the 2020 current football season still is technically set to proceed as planned in Manhattan on Sept. 5, we will continue the Countdown as normal for now.

#35 Taiten Winkel

True Junior | 6-0 | 175 lbs. | Halstead, Kansas
Taiten Winkel
Taiten Winkel
Courtesy Kansas State Athletics
  • Position: Kicker/Punter
  • Previous College: Butler Community College
  • Projection: Third-String
  • Status: Preferred Walk-On

Taiten Lee Winkel (b. June 21, 1999) is a walk-on defensive back who transferred from Butler Community College to K-State in the spring. He has three years left to play two seasons.

A two-year letter-winner at Halstead High School, the final year under head coach Jason Grider, Winkel holds the record for the longest field goal made in school history, while he averaged 42 yards per punt for the Dragons. He also lettered in soccer and basketball.

Winkel then played two seasons under head coach Tim Shaffner at Butler, where he punted 49 times for a 38.7-yard average as a sophomore en route to second-team all-conference honors. He saw 15 of his 49 punts land inside the opponent’s 20-yard line and 11 fair caught.

Winkel helped the Grizzlies to earn a 10-3 record and a victory in the Midwest Classic Bowl.

He had a season-best 57.8-yard average on five attempts at Iowa Western, which featured a 76-yard punt, and also a 51.0-yard average against Highland thanks in part to a 74-yard punt.

Winkel also was true on a 30-yard field goal against Snow College and punted in one game in 2018. His two longest punts ranked second and longest in school history, respectively.

Winkel played at Butler with fellow current Wildcats Parker Bruce, Hillard Cozine, Dawson Delforge, Derick Newton and Ty Zentner. He plans on majoring in kinesiology at K-State.