FARGO — Fargo Shanley kicker Emmet Kenney booted a 58-yard field goal earlier this season, a kick that resonated to California.
The Deacons senior committed to Stanford University for football, Kenney announced Saturday via Twitter.
“Stanford, it’s always been my dream school, looking at the academic and the football culture," Kenney said. "It’s one of the best schools in the nation and on top of that such a storied football program, as well.”
Kenney drilled a 58-yard field goal in Shanley's 43-38 loss against West Fargo Sheyenne in mid-September to set an unofficial state record, according to the North Dakota High School Activities Association. Kenney felt that kick helped elevate his national recruiting profile.
“With Stanford, I think that it was the 58-yarder that caught their attention," Kenney said. "The fact that, that one kick changed my life is something that I’m so grateful for.”
Kenney said Stanford started to recruit him in recent weeks and it was a "pretty fast process." The Cardinal offered him Friday night after Shanley's Eastern Dakota Conference game against Fargo Davies. The Deacons finished their regular season with a 4-3 record.
“I committed right on the call," Kenney said. “It’s the perfect situation, I couldn’t ask for anything better and to have that presented to me, it was just an incredible moment.”
Kenney said Stanford was his first FBS offer, however, he had received interest from other FBS schools. Stanford is a Power Five school and a Pac-12 Conference member. The Cardinal and head coach David Shaw are slated to start their regular season Nov. 7 at Oregon due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The 6-foot-4, 185-pound Kenney is one of the top prep kicking prospects in the country. Kohl's Professional Camps ranks Kenney at No. 21 in the country for kickers in the 2021 class.
Kenney had received offers from multiple FCS schools, including North Dakota State, the University of North Dakota and the University of South Dakota. All three are Missouri Valley Football Conference members.
“The schools that I had offers from, the Missouri Valley schools, those are incredible programs and incredible universities," Kenney said. "I would have been happy to go to any one of those, it’s not like I was just saying FBS or bust. I have an incredible amount of respect for NDSU, USD, UND.”
In early October, Kenney added to his stellar season, kicking two 50-yard field goals in Shanley's victory against Grand Forks Red River.
Kenney said he wants to be an orthopedic surgeon and plans to major in biology at Stanford for pre-med.
"It was just a dream come true when I got that call," Kenney said. "I’m so happy that I’m able to join such a great university both on and off the field.”