That was the day he married the former Haylie Farnsworth, capping a whirlwind few months in which the couple met, became engaged and tied the knot.
"I got the Monday practice off, too," said Nolen, also the Cougars' punter. "I was told by our coaches to enjoy my two-day honeymoon."
And so began the next chapter in the life of Nolen, a 27-year-old Mormon by way of Tennessee and Nevada who somehow made his way to a Catholic university in Chicago, where he's older than three of the Cougars' coaches.
"It's certainly a unique situation in a lot of ways," Saint Xavier head coach Mike Feminis said. "I don't know what the odds are of that happening, but it's not good."
A mission takes him West
Nolen grew up in the central Tennessee town of Columbia, where he was a special teams star at Central High School.
He walked-on and eventually earned the starting kicker spot at Division I-AA Tennessee-Chattanooga but abruptly left the school for a two-year Mormon mission that was based in Las Vegas but extended into western Nevada and eastern California.
Nolen packed virtually nothing for his religious journey out west, but he made sure to stay in football shape. He brought with him 204 pounds of weights, lifting while he laid on a couch's arm rests. And he always kicked pigskin once a week.
"You don't hear of a missionary doing that ever," Haylie Nolen said.
But he couldn't crack the starting lineup and decided to leave the school in 2011, sending out an email with a video link to his kicking exploits to 12 NAIA colleges in California, Virginia, Tennessee, Michigan, Kansas and Illinois.
Nolen said all 12 of the schools contacted him, and he chose Saint Xavier because "it was closest to some of my family, provided the highest financial award, and they were No. 2 in the preseason NAIA poll."
"We get these types of emails all the time, and very, very rarely does anything ever come of it," said Feminis, who noted only four of his 80 players are not from Illinois or Indiana. He's also never had a married player, or a Mormon, in 15 years at the school.
"It's just a crazy thing," Feminis added.
Nolen's addition to the roster has worked out quite nicely. He made 15-of-23 field goals last season and, while he's just 1-of-3 this season, he's averaging more than 46 yards per punt. He's also converted all six of his extra-point attempts for the 1-1 Cougars, who host Robert Morris University on Saturday night.
Nolen's holder and roommate on road trips for the last two seasons, Patrick Kelso, said he is a perfectionist when it comes to kicking.
"He wants the ball straight up and down," Kelso said. "If anything is wrong, he lets me know."
Kelso said Nolen's biggest improvement is how he handles missed field goals emotionally. He said this year, Nolen is a far more mature kicker.
For Nolen, that's where his new wife comes into play.
"She's given me a lot of real perspective to embrace," he said.
Summer of love
On May 6, Nolen was invited by a friend to a Mormon singles event hosted by Farnsworth at her Streeterville condominium building.
"I didn't want to go," Nolen said. "I'm glad I did."
He was immediately smitten with Farnsworth, also 27 and pursuing a psychology degree at Harold Washington College.
Their first date was May 9, at 11 a.m. at Ceres Cafe at the Chicago Board of Trade building, where they talked for hours and were amazed by their similar backgrounds and values.
Both came from huge families — Spencer is one of eight children; Haylie one of six, and she has 85 first cousins. They also are both devout Mormons who spend several hours each Sunday in church.
"I don't think they ever watched a movie or watched TV," said Haylie's mother, Lori Farnsworth, whose family runs two schools for the needy in Honduras. "It was extremely mature for a relationship early on, and they had no doubt in their minds that they were going to marry each other."
As Nolen's father, David, summed up: "Basically, when you know, you know."
Nolen said he waited three weeks and eight dates before he kissed Farnsworth for the first time.
"I was starting to wonder what the heck was wrong with this guy," Haylie said.
"We both came to Chicago to move forward in our lives, and we just happened to cross paths," Nolen said. "And when we crossed paths, we stayed together."
After the wedding, Nolen moved into his wife's condo. Nolen has graduated from Saint Xavier, and he's now pursuing a two-year MBA at the school. He also has a financial services job with MassMutual.
The Nolens are confident they made the right decision to become husband and wife so quickly. They said the best part of having such a young, powerful relationship is getting to learn so much about the other person.
And they love the opportunity to tell their unique story.
"We know we’re odd, we know we’re different, and that’s OK," she said.