For four years, Central High School's Andrew Mahaffey has made an impact on the football field for the Red Raiders. As of Wednesday afternoon, Mahaffey will have the chance to light up the gridiron at the college level.
The senior signed a letter of intent to continue his playing career at Centre College, located in Danville, Ky., starting in the 2019 season this fall.
"It's very exciting. I'm honestly kind of nervous but I think that goes with everything," Mahaffey said. "It's a dream come true for sure."
As a utility player, Mahaffey took on a wide variety of positions during his four years on the CHS varsity team. His positions included quarterback, running back, wide receiver, defensive back and strong safety.
"Just his versatility I think will really help him to excel at the next level," Coach Ryan Sulkowski said. "It's always gratifying for any kid to go on because there's so many limited spots to play college football."
The Centre Colonels are members of the NCAA Division III Southern Athletic Conference. Fielding a team since 1880, Centre has an all-time record of 509-374-37, with a claimed national title from 1919.
In addition to a storied football history, Mahaffey was also attracted to the school due to its welcoming nature. He plans to study biology to work with animals in some capacity, so academics were an important factor as well.
"When I went up there it felt like home," Mahaffey explained. "The team was more of a family than just a team and the academics are a big part too. They've got some of the best academics in the country, so that was a biggie."
Mahaffey's parents have been along for the ride throughout his playing days and are excited to see what their son can do at the next level.
"I think it's a great opportunity. It's going to be awesome to see him on the field again," his dad, Gary Mahaffey, said. "The school in itself I think's going to be a challenge and I'm looking forward to seeing what Andrew can make of that."
The CHS senior is looking forward to contributing to his new team in any role that he is needed.
"I just want to help out the team at Centre as much as I can," Mahaffey said. "Wherever they need me, I'll go."