Hotty Toddy says Andrew Ritter

The good news keeps on coming for the Ole Miss football program as one of the nation's top field goal kickers picked the Rebels over Arkansas and USM Sunday.

The 6' 4", 205 pound place kicker out of Jackson Aca had a sit down with his father this morning and decided on his school of choice.

"I committed to Ole Miss today," stated the excited Andrew Ritter. "I have really been thinking about this a lot because we have been in a dead period. I prayed about it and after the Cotton bowl, which really did not effect my decision one way or the other, I told my dad that is where I want to be. He told me that I needed to go ahead and hang up the recruiting process, so I called Coach Shibest (Ole Miss special teams coach) this morning and let him know."

The Rebel assistant was caught off guard with the news.

"I think he thought it was just a regular phone call, but he was really excited. He told me how relieved they were, and Coach Nutt said I made his day. Coach Jones was pumped up about it too. That was important to me. I had heard I was the number one kicker on their board, and that meant a lot to me. I think that is why Coach Shibest was so excited (laugh)."

Andrew grew up in an Ole Miss household as his whole family attended the University of Mississippi. In the end, the Rebels were just in his blood.

"I have been looking at all of the school the same way. I have been going through the pros and cons with every school, and everything feels right about Ole Miss. I have been praying about this for a long time, and it feels like home at Ole Miss. It was always a dream of mine to play for Ole Miss, but you have to separate the fan in you when you are being recruited. But once I got that opportunity to carry out a life long dream of mine, it was just too good of an opportunity to pass up. Plus, there were so many more factors involved. I have a great relationship with their coaches, and when I went to their practice the other week, I got to meet all of the players, and we all just got along so well. I knew all of the same people they knew. We just had so much in common. I just see myself having the best four or five years of my life at Ole Miss. Everything is right (for Ole Miss), and the timing could not be any better."

What is the "timing" aspect that Mississippi's 1st Team All-State selection is referring to?

"Joshua Shene (field goal kicker) is leaving after one more year and so is Justin Sparks (kickoff duties). I can get redshirted this year unless I win one of the jobs. But having the chance to go to practice and compete against one of the best field goal kickers and one of the best kickoff kickers will only bring out the best in me. I can learn a lot from those guys and put it into use when it is my time. I could not ask for a better situation to be in. Plus, Ole Miss' team is on the rise, obviously by beating the #8 team in the country. I just feel like they are going to be very successful while I am there. The only thing I can say is Hotty Toddy."

Ritter kicked 50 of his 51 kickoffs for touchbacks this season and made four field goals from over 50 yards. He averaged right at 72 yards on his kickoffs and was named 1st Team All-State for all classifications by the Clarion Ledger to go along with All-Conference and All-MPSA.

Andrew is the first special teams kicker in the state of Mississippi to carry multiple scholarship offers (OM, USM, Arkansas, and Army) since Jonathan Nichols. Jon won the Lou Groza award, which recognizes the nation's top special team's kicker, in 2003 while starring for the University of Mississippi.

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