September 19, 2005
The Redskins finished their game against Dallas with a big win. Now this game had some extra special meaning for a local player in particular. Redskins kicker Nick Novak, a graduate of Albemarle High School, made his NFL debut tonight.
Nick Novak was a standout place kicker and punter at Albemarle High School and then the University of Maryland. This isn't bad for a hometown boy that had never kicked a football until sophomore year of high school.
"[It's] exciting! Just the fact that he is at that level with, you know, what? One percent of all kids that ever played football make it to that level," said Albemarle High School Football Coach Rick Vhrovac.
Kicker Nick Novak made his NFL debut tonight much to the delight of his Albemarle Football family.
"When Nick was here he was a great kid, worked hard, just loved the game of football," said Equipment Manager Tony Jordan.
Novak only picked up football after his freshman year of high school when Coach Rick Vhrovac recruited him away from the soccer team. From that point on, he just excelled.
"As a high school kicker, Nick just matured every year. His ability to kick got better and better," Vhrovac said.
That ability drove him to all-state selections both sophomore and senior years at Albemarle High. He then moved on to the University of Maryland where he became the ACC's all-time leading scorer with 393 career points. All this was the result of hard work.
"We have a picture of Nick up in the locker room. Coach V, from time to time, always points out the hard work that Nick did when he was here," Jordan said.
Novak graduated from Maryland last year and bounced around two training camps this summer before being picked up by the 'Skins, an experience he call invaluable.
"Every team I 've been with has been a journey and an experience. I got to work with some great veterans," Novak said.
A journey that will be closely monitored by those who know him best.
"We're excited for him as an Albemarle Football program, and as a school we are excited for him," said Coach Vhrovac.
Novak ended the game tonight 2 for 2 with 2 extra points scored. After tonight, his future with the 'Skins is unknown. Regular kicker John Hall is out of the lineup with a hamstring injury, but that is not expected to side-line him for a long period of time.
Novak and the 'Skins have a bye week next week, and then play the Seattle Seahawks at home on October 2nd.