MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – It’s not often that a special teams player catches more attention that just about anyone on a football team. The West Virginia Mountaineers possess one of the most quirky, lovable specialists in all of college football.
Nick O’Toole, a.k.a Boomstache or Boombeard, is known for his wildly popular facial hair and his enormously powerful leg. From blasting kickoffs to delivering scarily accurate punts, O’Toole boomed his way into Mountaineer fan’s hearts back in 2013 and he’s still there today as his senior season draws closer to an end.
Here’s just a few reasons why this 6-foot-3 punter is so awesome:
- With that facial hair, he could almost be mistaken for an actual Mountaineer
The nickname ‘Boomstache’ first came about in 2013 when O’Toole debuted his infamous mustache that took college football media by storm. There was even a “Stache-the-Stadium” game where fans of all ages wore a mustache in honor of O’Toole’s greatness. Now, the No. 91 has grown out a full beard. Couldn’t you see ‘Boombeard’ being the next Mountaineer mascot?
- He’s one of the top punters at the Division I level
As a sophomore in 2013, O’Toole ranked 15th nationally and second overall in the Big 12 in punting. He was named to the Second Team All-Big 12 and finished the season with 26 punts of 50+ yards. 22 of those punts landed inside the opponent’s 20-yard line.
As a junior in 2014, O’Toole placed 24 punts inside the opponent’s 20-yard line. His longest punt on the season was whopping 59 yards. As a senior, he’s up to 46 punts with an average of 44.7 yards.
- Young Mountaineer fans look up to him
O’Toole is one of the nicest, fan-relatable players on the West Virginia football team. He has a special connection with young fans who treasure his goofy presence and his ability to keep them laughing.
He even pulled one of his biggest fans over the wall after a game just so she could snap a quick photo with him on the field (check out her matching beard).
- Not only does he kick/punt, he also plays offense/defense
While O’Toole’s specialty is obviously with his legs, he’s been known to make a few wild tackles on special teams. Not only that, but he’s also crept-in a few fake punts that allowed West Virginia to gain a much needed first down. This guy can do it all.
5. His teammates thrive off his positive energy
O’Toole is nothing short of the perfect teammate. His personality helps make every moment, good or bad, enjoyable for his teammates in the locker room and on the field.
He even showed up at Big 12 Media Day sporting “USA” socks and struck this hilarious pose to get a giggle out of his teammates and Big 12 opponents that were also in attendance.
It’s safe to say that Nick O’Toole isn’t just your average college football player. He’s unique. He’s a crowd-pleaser; one that Mountaineer fans truly adore. It’s players like this that make college football special, and West Virginia is certainly lucky to have this one-of-a-kind individual wearing the old gold and blue.