Grab your guitars and hair spray — it’s time to imagine what the Big 12 kickers would be as ’80s hair metal bands.
Oklahoma — Austin Seibert
Bon Jovi. He’s “Livin’ on a Prayer” and comes into the game with a good leg. The best thing about Seibert and Bon Jovi is that they’re able to show that they are indeed “Wanted Dead or Alive.” Seibert continues to have a shock and awe value, and he is sure to have some records coming underneath his belt.
Texas Tech — Michael Barden
Twisted Sister. Highly anticipated and wild. If you say the Red Raiders will have a low-scoring game, “We’re Not Gonna Take It.” It’s one of those bands that has a lot of potential throughout. Barden’s longest field goal this year is 47 yards, but maybe he will end the year saying “I Wanna Rock” and the leg will come through.
TCU — Jonathan Song
Alice N’ Chains. No, not Alice in Chains, the ’90s grunge band. Alice N’ Chains was a band that only lasted one year in the ’80s and only released two demos. Likewise, Song has only attempted seven field goals this season, but he’s made all seven kicks even though his longest was only 39 yards. Alice N’ Chains never really had any hits — they were mostly a cover band — but one member of the band did go on to join the more popular band, Alice in Chains.
Kansas — Gabriel Rui
Def Leppard. Rui is hitting 90.9 percent of his kicks, but has only tried 11 field goals. That’s still some of the best consistency in the conference, and Def Leppard (at least in the ’80s) was one of the most consistent hair metal bands. They released four albums in the ’80s, and all four records went platinum.
Oklahoma State — Matt Amendola
Motley Crue. One of the loudest, craziest bands in a generation. Amendola is sure to “Kickstart Your Heart” and be your “Dr. Feelgood” when it comes to scoring that field goal. Even though they’re also considered a pioneer of glam metal, Motley Crue is still epic and well known, but can be kind of buried because of their competition.
Baylor — Connor Martin
XYZ. Martin often gets forgotten about when talking about kickers, but he’s knocked 87.5 percent of his field goals in. Likewise, unless you are a glam metal aficionado, you probably forgot about XYZ. They only churned out one record in the ’80s and four overall, but they did tour with Alice Cooper and released an album with Capitol Records.
K-State — Matthew McCrane
Kiss. The greatest, most well-known hair band of all time. Kiss and McCrane have something in common: they are both leading in their own worlds. They have both been considered for awards, and they’ve both come back and surprised many. Just like Kiss with hair metal, McCrane is the best kicker in the conference, and he is the only kicker that is a semifinalist for the Lou Groza Award. After looking at McCrane’s comeback, he definitely wants to “Rock and Roll All Nite.”
Texas — Joshua Rowland
Warrant. This band started off slow — they didn’t blow up until the single “Heaven” was released in 1989. Likewise, Rowland started off slow. He missed his first two field goals of the year, but has recovered, going 7-11 since. Once Warrant got rolling, it became one of the bigger bands in the glam metal scene.
Iowa State — Garrett Owens
Frehley’s Comet. Ace Frehley left Kiss and started his own band before eventually going solo. Frehley was a huge star, but when he’s brought up in conversation, all that really comes up is Kiss and his solo music. Likewise, Iowa State has exploded onto the national scene, but no one pays attention to their kicker who is quietly making field goals at a 69.2 percent clip and has not missed an extra point.
West Virginia — Mike Molinda
Whitesnake. Molinda is one of only four seniors on this list, and Whitesnake was kind of the “old guys” of glam rock. Forming in 1978 and disbanding (although not permanently) in 1990, they were around for the entirety of the ’80s. In fact, lead singer David Coverdale had already had success with Deep Purple and gone solo for a while before forming Whitesnake.