Bloomington, Ind. - Josh Keyt has known for as long as he can remember what he wanted to do.
The North Putnam (Ind.) H.S. standout says ever since he was a toddler he's let it be known that he wanted Division I college football to be a part of his future. On Monday, it became clear he was going to get that chance.
The 6-3, 230-pound long snapper announced Monday he had accepted IU's offer to join the team in the fall of 2009. Heyt will start off his IU career as a greyshirt, but has been assured by Coach Bill Lynch's staff that he'll go on scholarship as soon as he becomes the team's No. 1 long snapper.
The expectation is that will happen in January 2010 after current No. 1 Brandon Bugg graduates.
"It's a dream come true," Keyt said of his IU decision. "It's what I wanted to do my whole life, and IU was my No. 1 pick. For them to ask me to come play there is awesome."
Keyt has built a national reputation for his long snapping abilities and is generally considered one of the five best at his position in the 2009 class. He's shown off his skills and drawn recruiting attention due to his work at a variety of camps, most notably the Chris Sailor Kicking camp.
Thanks to the tutelage of his instructor, Chris Rubio, as well as his father, Keyt has refined his skills to the point that he meets all of the criteria the IU staff is looking for in a long snapper, such as being able to get the snap back to the punter in seven-tenths of a second or less, and to be able to put the ball on the right hip of a right-footed punter.
Keyt's development and subsequent notoriety have come courtesy hard work. He said he practices his craft ever day, and has gone as far as to have a target set up 15 yards away in his basement so he can continue to practice in the winter months. That hard work paid off with plenty of recruiting interest, but Keyt said he eventually picked Indiana over an offer from Louisville.
"I knew if Indiana offered me they were going to be my No. 1 school," Keyt said.
Keyt's affinity for the IU program has been developed through a handful of visits to Bloomington to meet with Bill Lynch and members of his Hoosier coaching staff. During each of those trips he was able to sit down with the staff, and they in turn told him he was the lone long snapper they were looking at in the class.
Lynch, in particular, made an impression on Keyt. Keyt said the Hoosiers' head coach has a summer lake house that is only 15 minutes from his North Putnam, Ind., home, and he's seen Lynch out on the lake in the past. But the two didn't meet face-to-face for the first time until Keyt came to Bloomington for a visit, and Lynch's interest in him was quickly apparent.
"He came up and introduced himself and just seemed very interested in me," Keyt said. "That really set it off for me."
Keyt will arrive on campus in the fall of 2009 with designs on taking over the team's long snapping duties in 2010. He said he'll likely rotate in with the defensive linemen as well, adding depth at defensive end while he works to become bigger and stronger during his first year on campus.
He's getting a chance to fulfill his college football dream, and he'll be able to do it at the school he'd hoped he'd be able to play for after feeling a connection with the staff and the program during his recent trips to town.
"Every time I go down there, it feels like home to me," Keyt said.
Decision Was a Snap for IU Commit Keyt
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