Boston College is called “The Heights” for its hilltop location and its motto “Ever To Excel” – and Lynn Classical senior Keith Ridley will be bringing his football career to that lofty level in June.
Ridley, a 6-foot-4-inch, 225-pound quarterback who threw 41 touchdown passes in two seasons at Classical, officially announced his intention to attend BC during a ceremony Monday at Interim Principal Amy Dunn’s office.
Ridley has received an academic scholarship. He is a member of the National Honor Society and has a 4.26 grade point average. The recipient of the Item’s William F. Connell Student-Athlete of the Year Award, Ridley will study Communications and Broadcasting at BC.
Ridley said he has visited BC on several occasions.“It’s a beautiful campus and they really make me feel at home. That’s really one of the points that really sold me on going to BC.”
BC also has a brand-new, indoor athletic facility on the campus. “They have a beautiful athletic facility,” said Ridley. “There is an indoor football field and a weight room.”
He met future teammates, quarterback Anthony Brown and AJ Dillon, during one of his visits. “It was definitely exciting meeting those guys. It was a pleasure meeting Coach [Steve] Addazio and I’m looking forward to him being my head coach. He’s going to maximize your potential.”
Ridley thanked his parents for their support. “They are the reason I am in this position now,” said Ridley. “They know how thankful I am for them and I wouldn’t be here without them.”
Also attending the ceremony was James Ridley, Keith’s grandfather who is a legendary coach and school administrator in the city.
“My grandfather has been a big contributor to this moment,” said Ridley. “He’s helped me throughout this journey and the learning process because he has a strong background in what it takes to compete at the next level.”
Ridley also thanked Classical head football coach Brian Vaughan. “He’s been the real reason why I’m in the position of moving up to college football. I’m so thankful for his coaching and encouragement.”
“For him to play for a local college like BC, have a guaranteed roster spot, and compete for a position on the field, I’m excited for him,” said Vaughan, who played football at Northeastern University. “For him to walk away with a Boston College education, that’s huge.”
Ridley wore BC maroon and gold during the ceremony. “I love their uniforms and colors. I’m maroon and gold now, but I’m always going to have green and gold in my heart.”
Ridley said he hoped he was a positive example for Classical student-athletes. “You can accomplish anything you want – don’t let anyone underestimate you,” said Ridley. “I want the next group of kids growing up to be inspired by that.”
Ridley won’t have much to celebrate after his graduation in early June. He reports to BC on June 23.