Christian Heritage School's Joe Dixon said he loves being under pressure.
The rising senior kicker has been on a national kicking camp circuit this summer in hopes of earning a college scholarship and even among the best kickers in the country, Dixon said he enjoys the competition.
Dixon finished his junior season 32-for-33 on extra points and five-for-nine on field goals while helping the Lions win the second-most games in program history at 7-4, and their most since 2013.
Daily Citizen-News: You recently went to a national kicking camp. Have you received any college offers yet?
Dixon: None yet. Right now, I've talked with the coach from Suwanee (The University of the South) and with the Berry College coach. Vanderbilt asked for my academic transcript, too.
DCN: Do you have a dream school?
Dixon: Honestly, it's Alabama. But I wouldn't care if it was any Division I school. I just think it would be fun to see if I could do it in front of 100,000 people. It'd be fun to see if I could be a man out there.
DCN: Which camps and showcases have you attended? How did that go for you?
Dixon: I went to a Ray Guy (in Nashville, Tennessee) camp last summer and this summer in early June I went to a Kohl's kicking camp. I'm also going to Milwaukee on July 20-21 for another Kohl's camp. There were over 100 guys at the Kohl's camp earlier this summer, and I ended the camp being ranked as the No. 99-ranked kicker in the country and a 4.5 (out of 5) star recruit (based on the Kohl's rating system).
I also went to a "One-on-One" kicking camp in Atlanta recently. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers punter was there along with some other really great kickers and punters. We got to use actual NFL footballs. Those things fly!
DCN: What's the process of attending these camps and trying to earn a scholarship been like for you?
Dixon: Last year at the Ray Guy camp it was almost a 9-to-4 day. We started out with a classroom session where we went over our kicking motions and then we charted all our kicks. Then we had a break and competition in the afternoon.
At the last camp I went to we had an introduction and then we charted all our kicks again. After a break they gave us a few pointers, and then we had a competition because there were so many guys. They started us all kicking 50-yard field goals and I think about 25 of us made it from there. Then they backed it up to 55 and I was one of three guys to make it from there.
It's been fun. I love competing. I love trying to prove I'm the best one out there. The last couple camps were a little frustrating because I sprained my ankle this past spring during soccer season. I'm just now getting back to where it doesn't hurt anymore.
DCN: Do you have any goals for your senior season?
Dixon: This summer I just want to get stronger and for next season I want every kickoff in the end zone and I want to be 100% on my PATs. (Christian Heritage football) coach (Jay) Poag said he was going to have a bunch of recruiters come this fall so I just need to improve my distance. As a freshman I was kicking from 35 (yards) and now I'm kicking from 60.