Kevin Huber never left home. After graduating from Archbishop McNicholas High School in 2004, he became an All-American punter at the University of Cincinnati, then got drafted by the Cincinnati Bengals in 2009. And for the past seven months, he’s been back in the same Anderson Township house where he grew up, living with his parents
“I bought a house last season and I’ve been remodeling it, so I’m back in their basement,” says Huber with a sheepish grin, sitting in front of his locker after a training camp practice in late July. “Just kind of living off of them. Dinner, laundry, everything. It’s great.”
A walk-on for the UC football team in 2004, Huber redshirted his freshman year for the Bearcats and spent the majority of the next two seasons on the bench. He finally earned a starting spot (and a scholarship) entering his junior season, once he learned to loosen up and trust his abilities.
“[Every punt], you have 10 guys who want to come and block the ball and knock you into the next world,” says Huber. “But as long as you catch the ball and get it off quick enough, they’re not even going to come close. So if you think about it that way instead of, Oh my gosh, those guys are going to kill me, it can help you a lot.”
It clearly helped him, as he’s earned a spot as the Bengals starting punter each of his five seasons in the NFL—not to mention a nearby basement to crash at any time he wants.
“It’s a little weird,” says Huber. “I’ll talk to new players who come in, and when I say I’m from here they’re like, ‘Really?’” Yet even with all the perks afforded a local sports star, there are still a few items he’d like to cross off his Cincinnati bucket list. For instance: “I’ve never met Clooney,” he says. “That would be sweet.”