College Sports

Belleville’s Seibert sets another NCAA scoring record in Sooners’ Orange Bowl loss

Austin Seibert told the Dallas Morning News this week that he’d trade any record for an FBS championship.

With the fourth-ranked Oklahoma Sooners’ 45-34 loss to No. 1 Alabama in the Orange Bowl Saturday, the 2015 graduate of Belleville West is going to have to settle for the record book.

Seibert, a senior at OU, became the highest-scoring kicker in NCAA-FBS history with a 26-yard field goal in the third quarter of the FBS semifinal game. He entered the game just five points shy of the record of 494 points formerly held by Zane Gonzalez of Arizona State.

It was the fourth record to fall this season for Seibert, who already had become the all-time scoring leader both at Oklahoma and the Big 12 Conference, and the NCAA leader in points-after-touchdown.

After the game, Seibert took to social media to thank fans for their support of him since he earned his place as both starting placekicker and punter as a freshman. Beneath a photo of himself waving and walking off a college football field for the final time as a player he said. “To everyone who supported me ... I thank you. I love this team and University.”

Alabama opened a 21-0 first-quarter lead on OU before the Sooners put themselves on the scoreboard on Trey Sermon’s touchdown run early in the second quarter. The PAT put Seibert within four points of the record.

Minutes later, Oklahoma drove inside the the Alabama red zone to set up Seibert’s first field goal of the night to put him within a point of Gonzalez. Seibert got it, and then some, with a PAT and the 26-yarder in the third quarter. He added a pair of PATs in the fourth quarter to finish the game with 10 points.

Seibert’s 498 career points ties him with former Wisconsin running back Montee Ball for No. 3 on the NCAA all-time scoring list. Keenan Reynolds, a quarterback at the U.S. Naval Academy from 2012-2015, is the career scoring leader at any position with 530 points.

Alabama (14-0) advanced to the national championship game against Cotton Bowl champion and No. 2-ranked Clemson. Seibert can begin preparations for the NFL draft, which begins Apirl 25. Walter Football rates Seibert the second best placekicker available behind LSU’s Cole Tracy and projects him as a pick in rounds four through six.

BND Assigning News Editor Todd Eschman has won numerous state and regional awards for his columns, feature stories and news reporting. He was born and raised in Belleville, attended SIU-Carbondale, and is a member of the BBWAA, SABR and St. Louis Sports Hall of Fame.
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