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Vista PEAK Prep senior Noah Karwacki, left, and Denver Broncos kicker Brandon McManus talk with 104.3 The Fan's "Stokley and Zach" during "The Fan Kicks Childhood Cancer Challenge" on Nov. 6, 2018, at Vista PEAK Preparatory School in Aurora, Colorado.
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Kicker who raised money to fight cancer commits to play D-I football

Wednesday morning signaled the start of a new chapter in the life of Noah Karwacki.

The Vista PEAK Prep senior, joined by many across the U.S. on National Signing Day, revealed his intention to play college football at the University of South Alabama.

And with ink to paper, Karwacki put an exclamation point on the previous chapter of his football career, one in which he aimed to give childhood cancer the boot, literally.

A placekicker for Vista PEAK, Karwacki pledged to raise money with each field goal and extra point he made during his 2018 season to fund research to fight childhood cancer through the Kick-It Champions program and Alex’s Lemonade State Foundation, a national organization dedicated to the cause.

“Giving back is important. You always have to give back,” Karwacki said Wednesday. “And it starts a chain reaction. The more you give back, the more people are impacted and the more happiness spreads.”

In total, the campaign raised $6,614 to fight cancer and a garnered the attention of several NFL players, including Denver Broncos kicker Brandon McManus.

During “The Fan Kicks Childhood Cancer Challenge” in November, McManus surprised Karwacki with a $3,000 check to put him over his fundraising goal.

“That was crazy. I was so surprised because they didn’t tell me about it. I was just so surprised to see people there,” Karwacki said. “And then, when he handed me the check … I was so amazed. It was just a great experience to meet him”

“I’m just honored to be here for what Noah’s doing,” McManus told “Stokley and Zach” at the time. “… What he’s doing is special. And any way I could help I wanted to do it.”

Now, with some tips from the Broncos kicker in his pocket, Karwacki turns his gaze toward competing for the field goal and kickoff duties for South Alabama in the fall.

And Karwacki’s next lofty goal? A 73-yarder to “try to beat McManus,” he said with a laugh.

Follow digital content producer Johnny Hart on Twitter: @JohnnyHart7.