The man behind the booming kickoffs and punts for the Wildcats this season will be a Cardinal in the fall.
Pat Otter has committed to the University of Louisville.
The talented Saint Ignatius student-athlete announced his decision to accept's Louisville's preferred walk-on offer on Twitter over the weekend. Otter will redshirt the 2019 season and look to earn a scholarship in 2020.
Otter's decision came after drawing interest from a wide range of schools. Kohl's Professional Camps (the gold standard for kicking, punting, and snapping camps) rated Otter as a 4.5-star punter and a 4-star kicker.
At the end of the day, the feel of Louisville's campus decided it for Otter.
"It's pretty close to home, it's only about five hours away. When I visited there, it felt so right," Otter said. "The surrounding area and neighborhood are awesome. The atmosphere at the games is insane. It's a dream come true, playing college football for a program and in a stadium like that is pretty cool."
Otter visited Louisville during the NC State game on November 17. He was blown away by the atmosphere and the campus itself.
"One side of Louisville is all sports, and all super nice. The other side is academics. I couldn't see the school part much, because it was a Saturday and not many people were in class, but they have a great business program, so I'm excited for that," Otter said.
Louisville finished the season 2-10, but hired a new head coach earlier this month. Scott Satterfield assumes the reins following a successful stint at Appalachian State.
Besides the new direction of the program, Otter was impressed by the interconnectivity of local business with the school. Otter plans on majoring in finance, looking to enter the business world after graduating from college.
"They don't have a professional team in Louisville, so all of the businesses in the city of Louisville come and get season tickets to all of the games," Otter said. "All of Louisville sports bring in all of these businesses to watch them play, and it's a big business city there."
Based on his career with the Wildcats, Otter's future is bright.
Otter grew into a great punter and a young man during his time with the Wildcats. His career culminated in a wonderful senior season, in which Otter served as a reliable punter and kickoff specialist.
Looking at the stats, Otter punted 43 times in 2018. Of those 43 punts, Otter pinned opponents inside their own 20-yard line 17 times. Otter averaged 39.6 yards per punt, notching 4 punts of over 50 yards.
Otter garnered a number of postseason awards. Most notably, the Westlake native earned All-Ohio second-team recognition. Otter also found a spot on the 2018 Northeast Ohio Lakes All-District first-team.
Otter credits the players before him and his coaches for helping him reach the next level.
"Playing with [Matt] Trickett and [Colin] Goodfellow really helped me become the punter I am today," Otter said. "Coach Kyle also led me through every season. All of the fun and success we had here, I'm going to miss it, but I'm excited for the next level."
Other Wildcats have chosen Louisville, but foremost among them is Jon Gannon '01. The Cleveland native starred for the Wildcats before advancing to a nice career for the Cardinals. Gannon now coaches defensive backs/cornerbacks for the Indianapolis Colts. Coach Kyle's daughter, Maureen, also spent time working in Louisville earlier in her career.
Otter feels thankful for all of the people in his life who have supported him, making his dream possible.
"I want to thank my parents, coaches, and friends who helped me make it to the next level and to make my decision," Otter said. "My parents have helped me through everything. Go Cards!"
Congrats, Pat! You have a bright future ahead!