Kicking His Way to Fame: Shanley’s Emmet Kenney

Shanley's Kicker has received division one schools from posting videos on social media


FARGO, N.D. — Kicking wasn’t always the first love for Shanley’s Emmett Kenney. At a young age, Kenney played receiver and basketball before an injury sparked his interest with the leg.

“I was a wide receiver when I first started playing football. I was about in third-fourth grade and was pretty good at it but I happened to get injured, I had a shoulder injury,” Kenney said. “Once that happened, I didn’t wanted to risk getting injured for basketball. I was on the sideline a lot and picked up kicking because it was something I had a lot of fun with and noticed I was pretty decent. I decided to stick with it because it was a way I could still be around my friends and its blossomed into what it is now.

What its become is national interest. Kenney has posted videos on Twitter that have had over 19 retweets and 114 likes. The idea for posting his kicks online came from attending a kicking camp.

“I went to a Kohl’s Kicking camp and at Kohl’s there’s a lot of talented guys and I follow them on Twitter,” Kenney said. “I noticed they were doing the same thing. It can get you a lot of exposure and a lot of coaches can see them and follow you and start DM’ing you so I thought I would do the same just to get my name out there. I think it’s worked so far.”

Indeed it has. Since starting to post his videos, Kenney has received interest from all over the country including locally at North Dakota state and former Bison head coach Chris Klieman at Kansas State. To get to this point, Kenney had no idea when first starting out, success would come this quickly.

“I was just doing it for fun and I really wasn’t practicing that much until my junior year, it really started then,” Kenney said. “OK I might have a shot at this because I got a couple follows from coaches on Twitter and attended a couple of Kohl’s camps. That’s when I really started to take it serious and realize that I could have D-1 potential.”

Kenney realized he knew he had something special early on in his Deacons career.

“Once I started getting some playing time my freshman year, that’s when I realized we had some good kickers on the roster,” Kenney said. “I was still able to get into some games and kick a few field goals so once that happened I realized I had a shot at this, I need to focus on it.

Through all the attention, Kenney is just staying humble and not trying to look to far ahead of what he’s achieved.

“Its not very common for a kicker to be getting interviewed by the news and everything,” Kenney said. “I’m certainly grateful for it taking it in stride and taking it all in but I also realize at the same time, I’m part of a team and I’m just trying to do my job like everyone else.

Kenney’s longest field goal made was 61 yards and is set out for a big senior season. He lead the EDC in touch backs, was 7 of 8 from inside 40 yards and missed just four field goals in 2019.

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