Aug. 28, 2009
TUCSON--Arizona sophomore kicker Alex Zendejas has been pressing a bit in his practice workkicking of late, so one of his own famed family members dropped by UA practice to provide a few pointers this week.
His uncle, Max Zendejas, who turns 46 in a few weeks, has the credentials and then some.
Max set a pile of still-held Arizona kicking records but moreover won more than a few games with clutch field goals, notably a 45-yarder as time expired to beat ASU in Tempe in 1983, a 48-yarder as time expired to beat Notre Dame in South Bend in 1984 and a pair of FGs in the closing minutes to topple the Devils in Tempe in 1985.
He is Arizona's career scoring leader with 360 points, field goal leader with 79, the season leader in percentage with a 20-25 mark (.800) until Jason Bondzio eclipsed that a year ago (14-16, .875), kicked field goals in 18 consecutive games to set another UA record, and has the long mark with a 57-yarder against ASU in 1985. He was elected to the Arizona Sports Hall of Fame.
He was a second-team All-America pick by The Sporting News in 1985, played three years in the NFL for Washington and Green Bay and elected to the Arizona Sports Hall of Fame in 1999.
The younger Zendejas probably listened to his advice. The family includes a half-dozen noted kickers including ASU's Luis, an uncle who faced brother Max in games three times -- 1982-84, all won by UA. Max's Cats never lost to ASU.
Alex has yet to attempt a field goal in his career, after lettering last season with duty on kickoffs and some extra points.
Max Zendejas on the practice sidelines