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Football

Bishop Diego’s Shotwell Follows Family Path to Cal Poly

Bishop Diego football star Matt Shotwell is joined by his parents, Cindy and Steve, after signing his letter of intent with Cal Poly. Click to view larger
Bishop Diego football star Matt Shotwell is joined by his parents, Cindy and Steve, after signing his letter of intent with Cal Poly. (Barry Punzal / Noozhawk photo)

Bishop Diego's Matt Shotwell has been familiar with Cal Poly football since he was 3 years old. He went to home and road games with his family to watch brothers Kyle, Ryan and Troy tear it up for the Mustangs.

Following in the path of his brothers, Matt officially joined the Cal Poly football family on Wednesday, signing his National Letter of Intent with the Mustangs of San Luis Obispo during a ceremony at Bishop Diego’s gym.

[Video]

“It’s been a dream of mine for a long, long time to go play in the green and gold like they did,” Shotwell said of his brothers. “I know if wanted to go to a different college, they wouldn’t have cared, they’d just wish I was happy and everything like that. They’re happy I decided to go to Cal Poly. Hopefully, it’s the best decision of my life to go there, and I know it will be.”

The youngest son of Steve and Cindy Shotwell recalled going to Mustangs road games in Wisconsin and Montana.

“I’ve been to a lot of states because of Cal Poly football. I’m excited for the opportunities to travel a little bit more.”

Playing college football is in the DNA of the Shotwell family. Besides his older brothers, father, Steve, played at Cal in the late 1970s and was a teammate of Ron Rivera, the head coach of the Super Bowl-bound Carolina Panthers.

Shotwell, a middle linebacker and fullback for Bishop Diego, earned All-CIF-Southern Section honors in the Northern Division (Division 3) and was named to the All-State First Team for the Small Schools Division by Cal-Hi Sports. The Cardinals went 12-1 and advanced to the semifinals in Northern Division.

Bishop Diego coach Tom Crawford praised Shotwell for his work ethic and drive to get better.

“I know deep down Matt had the desire to follow the tradition set in the family to attend Cal Poly,” Crawford said. “But also know he had the desire to make a name for himself, and we’re very fortunate he did so. He did so with a lot of hard work, a lot of investment, team first and doing it the right way.

“I’m proud of you Matt and look for good things going forward.”

Shotwell said he’ll be playing middle linebacker at Cal Poly.

“It’s what I played here, so I feel like I’ll be very comfortable,” he said. “Hopefully, I get the starting job after I redshirt. That’s the plan to redshirt the first year.”

He said the coaching staff is pretty the same when his brothers played at Cal Poly.

“The whole family knows all the coaches. It’s kind of a family feel there right now,” he said.

Noozhawk sports editor Barry Punzal can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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