Atlanta Falcons kicker Younghoe Koo is one of the NFL’s top young players at his position. Stops with the Chargers and in the AAF eventually led him to Atlanta. But through no fault of its own, the anglicized spelling of Koo’s name creates conversation.
Making fantasy football teams named with puns of Koo’s name has become popular since his rise as a pro kicker, but that ignores how good Koo is. Entering Week 8 of the 2020 NFL season, Koo has made 38-of-42 field goals since joining the Falcons, including a perfect 3-for-3 from beyond 50 yards. He’s also made 28-of-31 extra points for Atlanta, and he has a touchback percentage on kickoffs of higher than 50 percent.
Here’s more about how to correctly pronounce Koo’s name, along with details on his college trick-kick exploits.
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How do you pronounce Younghoe Koo?
The official pronunciation of Koo’s first name is: YOUNG-hweh. In a non-pronunciation expert’s layman terms, it’s essentially putting the words “young” and “way” together, with a slight ‘h’ sound attached to the front of the second syllable.
Koo is pronounced as you’d expect — like the “coo,” the sound a bird makes.
What is Younghoe Koo’s name in Korean?
The Korean characters that make up Koo’s name are as follows: 구영회. In the Revised Romanization of Korean, it’s Gu Yeonghoe.
Where did Younghoe Koo go to college?
Koo attended college at Georgia Southern University. He was first-team all-conference in the Sun Belt in his final year, making 19-of-20 field goals.
Before college, Koo had moved to the United States with his mother in the sixth grade. They lived in New Jersey, and he attended Ridgewood High School. Koo wasn’t just a kicker in high school — as a senior, he tallied six interceptions as a defensive back.
Younghoe Koo trick kicks
Koo gained notoriety before his NFL journey thanks to one trick kick that went viral on the Internet. The video is below, but we’ll try to describe it for you.
With a football laying on its side ahead of Koo, he approaches and flicks the ball forward using both feet. Koo puts the correct spin on the ball for it to align upright in a kickable fashion. Koo’s kick itself is pretty normal and straight through the uprights, but on his follow-through, Koo keeps going and completes a back flip.