With the no. 236 pick in the 7th round of the 2023 NFL Draft the Indianapolis Colts selected Northern Michigan offensive lineman Jake Witt.

Witt becomes the first Wildcat drafted into the NFL since 1991.

A 2018 graduate of Ewen-Trout Creek, Witt began his college career playing basketball for Michigan Tech. After transferring to NMU the following school year, Witt joined the Wildcat football team in 2020, first playing as a tight end before moving to offensive tackle.

In March, Witt participated in Central Michigan University’s Pro Day, excelling in drills like the 40-yard dash, vertical jump, and broad jump.NMU’s Jake Witt creating NFL Draft buzz after impressive CMU Pro Day

“He’s worked his tail off, he’s put on about twenty pounds of muscle in the past ten weeks,” Dustin Brancheau, the owner and special strengths coach at AdvantEdge Training, told Local 3 in March. “That was a major concern for a lot of the scouts, they wanted to make sure that he could get up over 300lbs and he did that. He got up to 302lbs and his height was 6’7″. We knew that if we could continue to stay where he was at, that he would test better than any other lineman possibly in the history of the NFL Combine.”

The Pro Day workout was measured using a ‘Relative Athletic Score’ (RAS), comparing Witt’s performance to those of other prospects through the years. Witt recorded a 9.80 RAS score out of a possible 10.00 scale, placing him in the top 2% all time for his position group since 1987 and drawing the the eyes of NFL evaluators.

Witt says he’ll carry his Yooper roots with him to the NFL.

“The U.P. support is huge for me,” said Witt. “I’m going to be wearing it on my back as a Yooper, a proud Yooper, wherever it takes me. Whether I’m playing on an NFL field, I’m going to be wearing that Yooper on my back. It’s just something that I’ve embraced and I’m just going out to show that there are no boundaries for people, for kids from the U.P, for people from small areas. You can set your bar high and achieve what you want to achieve. So, I’m going to wear it proudly, I’m going to embrace the Yooper in me and it’s going to be a fun process.”