Greg kelley texas

Greg kelley texas DEFAULT

How Football Player Greg Kelley Is Rebuilding His Life After a Wrongful Conviction Sent Him to Prison

Greg Kelley, OutcryCourtesy of SHOWTIME

Greg Kelley has hopes and dreams, like a lot of people.

But he's also busy simply enjoying his freedom.

The former high school football star, whose story was just told in the Showtime documentary series Outcry, spent three years in prison for a crime he didn't commit and, even after his release in 2017, he was only formally exonerated this past November.

The crime? "Worse than murder" when you're in prison, Kelley said in an interview last month with E! News.

Kelley started playing varsity football at Leander High School in Texas—where high school football on Friday rivals church on Sunday as a religious practice—when he was a sophomore. In 2013, with four scholarship offers on the table, a steady girlfriend and the future looking bright, the 17-year-old was accused of molesting a 4-year-old boy.

He was convicted in 2014 of super-aggravated assault on a child and sentenced to 25 years in prison

"Being labeled a pedophile is worse than murder," Kelley explained. "When you're in there as a pedophile you're already the scum of the earth." He's surprised he was never stabbed, he said, but not a day went by where he didn't have to defend himself.

All the while, he insisted he was innocent. His new attorney, Keith Hampton, filed multiple motions, alleging that the police investigation was shoddy and that Kelley wasn't properly represented at trial. The legal team also filed documents naming an alternate suspect, Johnathan McCarty. McCarty's family had taken Kelley in when Greg's own parents' health problems made it tough for them to take care of him. Shama McCarty, Johnathan's mother, ran an in-home daycare, the scene of the alleged sexual assault. (In an unrelated case, Johnathan was sentenced to four years in prison last year after pleading guilty to unlawful restraint and drug charges. A girl had accused him of drugging and assaulting her at a frat party in 2015, when she was 15 and he was 18.)

Courtesy of SHOWTIME

In May 2017, newly elected Williamson County District Attorney Shawn Dick agreed to reopen the investigation, and that August, Kelley was released on a $50,000 bond. His name wasn't cleared yet, but the young man was feeling hopeful.

District Judge Donna King recommended in December 2017 that Kelley's conviction be overturned, writing in her decision that the state wouldn't have been able to prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt if certain evidence that had come to light since had been presented at trial. After that, Kelley had to wait and see what the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals would say.

Almost two years later, the appeals court agreed, sent their decision back to the district court to formally dismiss the indictment, and King declared an emotional Kelley "formally exonerated."

Between Kelley, his family and his fiancée, the tears were flowing.

Courtesy of SHOWTIME

But while that was the outcome Kelley had been praying for, his life hasn't simply snapped back to normal.

"Still to this day, it doesn't get easier," Kelley told E! News. "Me and my family, that nightmare that we went through, is something I don't wish on my worst enemy. It was definitely hard. We got to premiere this documentary months before it came out and, sitting there with my family, reliving six years of heartache in a documentary that's about five hours—I mean, there's no words to explain it."

As he works on putting his world back together, buoyed by his faith and all the love in his life (including from his now-wife Gaebri Anderson, the high school girlfriend who stuck by him throughout his ordeal), he's also suing the city of Cedar Park, former Police Chief Sean Mannix and Sgt. Christopher Dailey, who was the lead investigator on his case.

According to the lawsuit filed in May and obtained by the Austin American-Statesman, Kelley alleges that Dailey did not verify Kelley's location the day of the assault, did not investigate other suspects, falsified information about when the assault happened and deleted emails about the case. The suit contends that Dailey was told Kelley hadn't lived at the McCarty home since June 2013 but changed the date to make it look as if he was still there on the July date the assault was alleged to have occurred.

Dailey resigned in July, according to Spectrum News, and the city sent a letter to the district attorney's office requesting an investigation into the now-former police sergeant's conduct. Having previously maintained that he conducted a thorough investigation in the Kelley case, Dailey had yet to comment. Chief Mannix retired from the Cedar Park force in February and was due to assume that role in the much smaller city of Burnet, about 36 miles away, but KXAN reported on July 13 that he would no longer be taking the job.

Kelley had publicly expressed his hope that Dailey and Mannix would be fired, telling reporters outside Burnet City Hall, "The reason why we wanted this to happen guys is because it's not about me, it's about the next person. We wanted to make sure that this guy did not want to come right next door to y'all's town, because I know you guys love your town just like we love ours, and do this to somebody else."

He added, "The heartache and division it has created in our town is something that should never happen."

Separate from his own civil suit, Kelley is also eligible to receive as much as $250,000 through the state's Wrongful Incarceration Act, according to his attorney.

But even in the middle of the nightmare, he found bright spots. He made friends on the inside whom he keeps in touch with daily, and he said he intends to start a prison ministry to help people serious about turning their life around. "I want to give back," he said. "Those guys taught me so much about getting through and persevering through such a place full of hatred and violence, and racists. It's crazy!"

And when he was convicted, Kelley recalled, "a groundswell of support from above started coming up and people started having my back. I didn't expect any of that. I myself was losing hope, but all these people started believing in me and they started to say, 'Hey, Greg, we're here for you man, we love you, we're gonna get you through this.' It gave me a little bit more hope."

Strangers really did come out of the woodwork. A former Cedar Park resident named Jake Brydon helped pay for his defense through the appeals process. "You had no idea who I was after my conviction," Kelley said in court on the day of his exoneration. "But you called my broken mother and promised her you would do everything you could to fight for me."

Jim Redman/Courtesy of SHOWTIME

Still, none of that changes that he spent almost seven years, including three behind bars, with a cloud of guilt hanging over his head. A presumption of innocence until proven guilty may be the law, but that's not often the way people think.

Early on, as soon as his name was out there, the case was taken up in the court of public opinion by child welfare activists—and the Internet took it from there. And once he was convicted, those who had assumed he was guilty figured they were merely being proved right.

Kelley said that of course children should have fierce advocates and they are generally doing important work. "But," he added, "it turned into about six or seven of them... turning it more into a hatred towards me. Saying things they can't and they won't take back and, still to this day, I continue to get persecuted, and it breaks my heart. It really does.

"It breaks my family's heart because I don't deserve that, they don't deserve that. I've done everything I possibly can to show you that I didn't do this."

Texas Ranger Cody Mitchell, tasked with leading the new investigation in 2017, testified that August that he had determined that the Cedar Park Police had botched the original investigation. He was unable to definitively conclude who the perpetrator was, but he had three suspects: Kelley, Johnathan McCarty and an unnamed third person.

Keith Hampton had alleged in Kelley's appeal that the accused's trial lawyer, Patricia Cummings, had not adequately defended him, namely by refusing to take a harder look at McCarty as a possible suspect due to a conflict of interest, having represented members of the McCarty family some years prior.

She maintained in 2017 that the defense she went with—arguing that no abuse had occurred—was her best available option at the time based on the evidence. Court documents filed by Hampton in December 2018 stated that they also had a third suspect, whose name was not made public, who had a prior arrest on a charge of indecency with a child and had also lived in the home where the abuse allegedly took place. Furthermore, the filing also alleged, Cummings had previously represented this third suspect in another matter and therefore refrained from investigating that person as well.

An attorney for Cummings told the American-Statesman that she didn't have any evidence against this third person when she was on the case, but "it is significant that they are now saying that he is the one who did this. We all agree that if [this person] committed the offense, then Greg's conviction should certainly be reversed." 

No one has been charged in the case since Kelley was cleared.

In early November, when the appellate court agreed Kelley's conviction should be overturned, Hampton told reporters that prosecuting someone else for the crime would be a tricky case no matter what. "This particular child said Greg," he acknowledged. "And he's never said anything but Greg and he said it under oath. It's testimony, so how does a prosecutor overcome that?"

Kelley also said that day, "I was given my freedom and I'm happy with it." But, he added, "I want justice." And "I want this kid to feel like he's been delivered justice."

Shawn Dick told reporters a few weeks later, "We were able at least to get to the truth of whether or not Greg Kelley should have been convicted and whether or not the trial was held appropriately. Unfortunately, we were unable to get to the ultimate answer of what happened to the child."

Courtesy of SHOWTIME

But though Kelley is committed to holding the parties he feels are responsible for damaging his life—"financially, emotionally, mentally, physically"—accountable, he told E! News, "hate is a virus and I have to realign myself with what my purpose needs to be, every time I wake up."

He calls his wife, Gaebri Anderson, "totally unreal," adding, "I don't think there's a woman out there that can compare to the amount of heart and faith she has…I would be a damn fool to ever try to let that go. I hit the jackpot."

Anderson, 24, told the New York Post last month, "It was crazy. I had friends since I was a baby who were saying, 'I can't believe you are sticking by him.' From the first day in my heart, I knew he didn't do this." She continued, "I had no doubt in my mind. I knew what kind of person he was. We weren't really scared going into the trial. There was no way he was going to get convicted on the evidence they didn't have. We actually had a trip planned for the next day."


They both may have had too much confidence in the system, but at least in the end, her faith and trust in Greg was not misplaced.

Both just 17 at the time, the trial made them grow up fast. Kelley wrote her letters with drawings of hearts all over them from prison. "The physical was taken away from us," Gaebri, a cheerleader in high school who now teaches at a dance studio near Cedar Park, told the Post. "Imagine not being able to kiss or hug the person you love. We had to fall in love with each other's hearts through these letters."

Kelley asked his future father-in-law for his daughter's hand in marriage while he was still locked up—but he didn't propose until after he was out. Earning money proved tough while he was still a convicted felon, so he saved up for a ring doing yard work and other odd jobs. They tied the knot in Austin this past January.

They're holding off on having kids though, Anderson said, so that her husband can focus on school.


Kelley was accepted at the University of Texas and, after getting a walk-on tryout this spring, hopes to play for the Longhorns.

"Football is a love of mine, something that I feel like has been given to me to love and to cherish and to experience," he told E! News. "So I want to explore that, I want to be given an opportunity to go and show these coaches like, 'Hey, I can continue to play, I've got tons of heart. Give me a shot.' I'm still waiting for that decision from Texas, to see if I'm going to be a walk-on this fall—if we have a fall season."

As of now, the Big 12 hasn't canceled football season due to COVID-19, unlike some of the other major college football conferences. 

But if anyone has the patience and strength to wait it out a bit longer, it's Kelley. Just last week he showed off the high school diploma he finally had a chance to go and get in person.

"Picked up my long overdue high school diploma yesterday at Leander High School," he wrote on Instagram. "It was an honor being able to be given this as I shook the hand of the current principal and was given a tour of a school where I once created wonderful memories. [E]ven though I didn't technically have a senior year as a normal high school student, the past is the past and the future is limitless."

Catch Justin Sylvester's interview with Greg Kelley on the Aug. 19 episode of E!'s Just the Sip, available wherever you get your podcasts


Texas Football: S Greg Kelley wanting a return to the Longhorns

A familiar name to most Texas football fans for a wrongful conviction in recent years, former Eastern Michigan Eagles safety Greg Kelley is someone who remained in headlines for various reasons of late. Now that his name was cleared of the wrongful conviction and he’s back playing college football, Kelley is an interesting name to watch for Texas fans.

According to a report from Horns247 on May 4 (paid content), Kelley would like to make a return to the Forty Acres after he was admitted to the school in the spring semester last year. But in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, Texas and former head coach Tom Herman didn’t take any walk-ons in spring ball. Thus Kelley wasn’t able to make the team last year.

Once Kelley figured out that the Longhorns weren’t taking on any additional walk-ons last spring, he put his name in the NCAA Transfer Portal. Eventually, he would land at Eastern Michigan, but he wouldn’t really get to play last fall since the program had a shortened season due to COVID-19 and a groin injury he reportedly suffered.

Greg Kelley making a potential return to the Texas football program?

There are no concrete reports at the moment that new Texas head coach Steve Sarkisian and his coaching staff are looking into Kelley out of the transfer portal. But he did state in that piece with Horns247 this week that he would like to be closer to home and that the Longhorns would be an ideal landing spot to be close to family.

Moreover, Kelley did get to participate in Eastern Michigan’s spring game this offseason, and he reportedly recorded a pick in the process. That is a good sign potentially of what’s to come for Kelley as he looks to take his talents back to the state of Texas this year.

Kelley still has yet to play an actual down of football in regular season game action. His first opportunity could come this fall, depending on where he lands next.

And if Sark is willing to continue to look in the portal for help this offseason, Kelly could be a name to watch moving forward. This was already a busy offseason in the portal for the Longhorns, with their most recent addition coming in the form of former New Mexico State Aggies redshirt sophomore linebacker Devin Richardson.

Texas finished up last season with a record of 7-3 (5-3 Big 12) under the direction of the former head coach Herman. Back on Jan. 2, the former Alabama Crimson Tide offensive coordinator Sark replaced Herman as head coach.

  1. Dodge dealership utah
  2. Sims 4 character download
  3. Arduino mega hole pattern
  4. Kbb subaru outback
  5. Throggs neck real estate

Following exoneration, Greg Kelley to play football for Eastern Michigan

Greg Kelley, who was exonerated last year after being wrongfully convicted of sexual assault of a child, will play football for Eastern Michigan University.

Greg Kelley has accepted a full-ride scholarship this week to play football at Eastern Michigan University.

Kelley, 25, was exonerated last year after being wrongfully convicted of the sexual assault of a four-year-old boy in 2013 at a Cedar Park day care.

Kelley declined to comment on the scholarship, which he announced on Facebook. The university is in Ypsilanti, Mich. He played safety on the Leander High School football team.

Eastern Michigan’s assistant head coach Neal Neathery developed a strong relationship with Kelley when he recruited him to the University of Texas at San Antonio in 2013-14, head coach Chris Creighton said in a news release.

“We take matters like this very seriously,” Creighton said. “We believe that much of Greg's youth has been taken away from him and we want to give him the opportunity to live out his dream of playing Division I football."

The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals exonerated Kelley in November 2019.

Kelley had served three years of a 25-year prison sentence when released on appeal in 2017. He was released after officials said there was newly discovered evidence suggesting two other possible suspects in the case.

Kelley, who was a student at the University of Texas since January 2020, went through a walk-on tryout with the Longhorns in February, the release said. It said that after he did not earn a spot on the team, he put his name in the NCAA transfer portal.

"Mr. Kelley is an exonerated man in the eyes of the law, and an eligible student-athlete in the eyes of the NCAA,“ said Scott Wetherbee, the director of athletics and vice president at Eastern Michigan.

“Eastern Michigan is not looking to become part of a story in which it does not belong, but rather to serve as the first chapter in the next facet of a young man's life,” Wetherbee said. “We look forward to helping Mr. Kelley succeed in his academics and on the playing field."

Eastern Michigan is a Division I school in the Mid-American conference, which canceled its football season this fall due to the coronavirus pandemic.

View Comments


'Outcry' Doc Examines What Really Happened in Greg Kelley Child Sex Assault Case

At a documentary screening a few years back, a friend pulled aside the director Pat Kondelis and told him about a story he should look into. This happens to Kondelis all the time, so he thought little of the tip, consumed as he was with publicity for Disgraced, his Emmy-award winning dive into the Baylor basketball murder-and-coverup scandal that aired on Showtime.

Eventually, Kondelis did look into the saga his friend had recommended. The one about Greg Kelley, the high school football star from Leander, Texas, a small city of roughly 50,000 north of Austin. Kelley was set to begin his senior season in 2013 when he was arrested and charged with sexually assaulting a 4-year-old boy, a crime for which he would eventually be sentenced to 25 years in state prison without parole. By the time Kondelis dove in, Kelley had a large group of fervent supporters, a devastated family, strong evidence his case had been mishandled by the Cedar Park Police Department and his own initial counsel, and something else that appealed to Kondelis—a story that spoke to universal themes like football in America and politics interfering in small-town justice with a case unlike any he’d ever come across. Since Kondelis is also based in Austin, he knew that officers in Williamson County, like those in Cedar Park, had long been accused of corruption.

Interest perked, Kondelis set up a meeting with Kelley’s family, since Kelley himself was already behind bars. Something like 20 people showed up to discuss Kelley, his career and his case—and the conversation lasted for almost four hours. In the days that followed, Kondelis couldn’t shake his fascination with the story. What had really happened? And that question drove what eventually became Outcry, a five-part docuseries that will premiere on Showtime on Sunday. July 5 at 10 p.m. ET.

Kondelis met with Kelley in prison to pitch him on the project. He told Kelley that he would take a non-biased approach, presenting challenging notions to him and his supporters, asking all questions, even controversial ones. Kelley might get uncomfortable, Kondelis told him, but he wanted to be transparent. Kelley agreed to open his life up anyway, even though he says he’s naturally shy. “I was willing to do anything,” he says. “I didn’t know what my fate was going to be, but I didn’t just want this documentary to be made. I needed it to be made.”

The director and his crew filmed Kelley, his family, his supporters, the police chief, the prosecutors, the defense lawyers, ex-coaches, classmates and victim’s advocates for more than three years. But whereas most sports documentaries focus on events that happened in the past—especially the romanticized long ago past—and stick to the age-old formula of replaying events that happened and assessing the significance they now hold, what separates Outcry is how Kondelis filmed in real time, with almost all the important players reacting to events as they unfolded, often finding out about those developments on camera. The doc unfolds as it did for the crew and its subjects, adding tension and sustaining suspense through five hours spread over five episodes. “Inevitably, when you’re just looking back, you’re not going to get as true a sense of what happened,” Kondelis says. “There’s going to be revisionist answers once everything is finished. Here, even key players didn’t know what was happening.”

Without giving too much of the documentary away, the crew filmed Kelley and his supporters discussing the case itself, how it allegedly took place at an in-home daycare where Kelley was staying for his senior year after his father had suffered a stroke and his mother had endured a brain tumor. They trace Kelley’s initial trial, in July 2014, his rejection of a lesser plea offer and how he steadfastly maintained his innocence. There are leading detective interviews, other suspects that weren’t initially considered, appeals trials, rallies, lie-detector tests and a petition for a writ of habeas corpus.

Kelley is filmed while in jail and while out on bond, starting in Aug. 2017; Kondelis estimates his crew recorded over 180 hours of footage in those three years. He’s filmed training to resume to the football career he lost to his incarceration. He’s filmed calling for an apology from and the firing of Cedar Park’s police chief, Sean Mannix (he retired in January), and Sgt. Chris Dailey, the main investigator in the case. He’s even filmed the moment he finds out whether he will be exonerated (no spoilers here). “I was in shock multiple times over the revelations,” Kondelis says. “I’ve never had less control over any story I’ve told before. This was us just sitting back, along for the ride.”

While Kelley awaited his fate, he decided he wanted to walk on to the football team at the University of Texas, and he began to train with former Longhorn running back Jeremy Hills and NFL luminary Kenny Vaccaro. He soon found he could hang with them.

“One thing I’ve realized through all these years,” Kelley says, “is there were times I wasn’t the strongest, times I was broken in prison, times I saw my family broken, times I was strong, times I had to embrace my reality. If I ever get the chance to play football, I want coaches to know I’m pretty damn good at suffering. I’m not looking to be a charity case. I just want to get back what was taken from me, what was stripped from me.”


Texas greg kelley

Greg Kelley spent 1,153 days in prison before he was exonerated. Now, he'll play football at EMU

Eastern Michigan has landed its most high-profile recruit in years.

Greg Kelley, a former Texas high-school standout who was wrongfully convicted of two child sexual-assault charges and was completely exonerated in November 2019, has received a full scholarship to play at Eastern, he wrote on Instagram on Saturday and the university confirmed.

Greg Kelley, left, on the day he was officially exonerated in November 2019.

Kelley was convicted in 2014 and sentenced to at least 25 years in prison with the possibility of parole. He was released on bond in 2017, and sufficiently proved his innocence.

Kelley, a safety, had tried walking on at Texas this fall, but Texas wasn't accepting walk-ons this year because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

"I want to thank everyone at @easternmichigan for giving me this opportunity to play the game I love again," Kelley wrote on Instagram. "I missed it so much and I can’t wait to pad up this week!"

It's not clear when Kelley, 25, will get to play. The Mid-American Conference remains committed to a spring season, though its presidents met Saturday to discuss the possibility of reinstating a fall season. The MAC presidents didn't reach a decision; one is expected this week.


Kelley, committed to Texas-San Antonio at the time, was arrested in 2013, when he was a high-school senior. He was alleged to have sexually abused two young boys at an in-home daycare, and the following year, he was convicted and sentenced. There were significant holes in the case, though, even after conviction — the child never properly identified Kelley, in a photo, as the perpetrator, and the lead detective never interviewed Kelley, and admitted asking leading questions while interviewing the young boys.

Also, Kelley's attorney had done legal work for the family of the man who eventually admitted to the crime for which Kelley was accused and convicted.

Kelley declined a plea deal that would've kept him out of prison, and in July 2014 was convicted by a jury of two counts of super-aggravated sexual assault of one boy. The charge by the other boy was dismissed.

One petition was denied in September 2014, and an appeal was denied in 2016. But in 2017, his new lawyer filed a new petition, claiming Kelley had received an inadequate legal defense in the first trial, and that the lead detective conducted a faulty investigation. He was released on bond in August 2017, a districtcourt judge recommended the conviction be overturned in December 2017, and last Nov. 6, it became official.

Multiple judges wrote that Kelley was an innocent man, not just freeing him based on technicalities.

The other suspect, Johnathan McCarty, is the son of the woman who ran the daycare, and once was a high-school friend and roommate of Kelley's. They were living together at the time of the alleged incidents. McCarty is now in prison on unrelated drug charges.

Kelley's case has been well-documented, including in the Showtime series, "Outcry."

"Mr. Kelley is an exonerated man in the eyes of the law, and an eligible student-athlete in the eyes of the NCAA," Eastern athletic director Scott Wetherbee said in a statement Saturday." I encourage you to look into his background with the significant coverage that his story has generated, so you can get a full understanding of the case. As with any student-athlete, we would provide him the same academic and personal resources that are provided to all within our institution, and will hold him to the same standards as every other student-athlete on campus. Eastern Michigan is not looking to become part of a story in which it does not belong, but rather to serve as the first chapter in the next facet of a young man's life. We look forward to helping Mr. Kelley succeed in his academics and on the playing field."

Said football coach Chris Creighton: "We take matters like this very seriously. We believe that much of Greg's youth has been taken away from him and we want to give him the opportunity to live out his dream of playing Division I football."

Neal Neathery, Eastern Michigan's assistant head coach and defensive coordinator, recruited Kelley to Ypsilanti. Neathery first recruited Kelley when he was on the staff at Texas-San Antonio.

Earlier this year, Kelley filed a wrongful-conviction lawsuit against the city of Cedar Park, Texas, the city's former police chief and the police department's lead investigator on the case. The city and the police department have yet to honor the supporters of Kelley, who've demanded an apology.

Kelley was in prison for 1,153 days, and on bond for 1,149 more days.

[email protected]

Twitter: @tonypaul1984

View Comments

Court documents reveal new information in Greg Kelley case
section. // // NOTE: You can test if the tags are working correctly before the campaign launches // as follows: Browse to, which is // a page that lets you set your local machine to 'testing' mode. In this mode, when // visiting a page that includes a VersaTag, a new window will open, showing you // the tags activated by the VersaTag and the data sent by the VersaTag tag to the Sizmek servers. // // END of instructions (These instruction lines can be deleted from the actual HTML) var versaTag = {}; = "5556"; versaTag.sync = 0; versaTag.dispType = "js"; versaTag.ptcl = "HTTPS"; versaTag.bsUrl = ""; // VersaTag activity parameters include all conversion parameters including // custom parameters and Predefined parameters. // Syntax: "ParamName1":"ParamValue1", "ParamName2":"ParamValue2". // ParamValue can be empty. versaTag.activityParams = { //Predefined parameters: "OrderID": "", "Session": "", "Value": "", "productid": "", "productinfo": "", "Quantity": "" //Custom parameters: }; //Static retargeting tags parameters. Syntax: "TagID1":"ParamValue1", "TagID2":"ParamValue2". ParamValue can be empty. versaTag.retargetParams = {}; //Dynamic retargeting tags parameters. Syntax: "TagID1":"ParamValue1", "TagID2":"ParamValue2". ParamValue can be empty. versaTag.dynamicRetargetParams = {}; // Third party tags conditional parameters and mapping rule parameters. Syntax: "CondParam1":"ParamValue1", "CondParam2":"ParamValue2". ParamValue can be empty. versaTag.conditionalParams = {};

Similar news:

Greg Kelley to play football at Eastern Michigan after wrongful child sex crime conviction was overturned

Greg Kelley, a former Texas high school football player who had his 2014 conviction in a child sexual assault case overturned due to a faulty investigation, will play football on scholarship for Eastern Michigan. He made the announcement on an Instagram post uploaded on Saturday.

"We believe that much of Greg's youth has been taken away from him and we want to give him the opportunity to live out his dream of playing Division I football," Eastern Michigan coach Chris Creighton said Saturday, per ESPN.

Kelley was arrested his senior year of high school in 2013 for allegations of sexual abusing a 4-year-old child. He was convicted a year later and sentenced for 25 years without possibility of parole. He had been fighting to overturn his conviction ever since it was handed down, but the campaign really picked up steam when Shawn Dick, a newly elected Williamson County district attorney, reopened the case.

Kelley was released on bond in 2017, with his attorney filing that another man had admitted to the crimes and evidence showing there were many faults in the investigation -- the kids who accused him of the crimes were never shown photographs to confirm Kelley's identity, for example. The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals finally overturned his conviction in November, where he was declared innocent and fully exonerated.

Though he may be 25, there's some belief that he could make a legitimate impact on the field. Former Texas running back Jeremy Hills, a trainer with clients including Earl Thomas III and Landon Collins, has been training Kelley since he moved back to Austin last fall. From what he told ESPN, Kelley's got some serious talent.

"You really start looking at Greg and realize not only can this kid move well, he'll probably play on Saturdays at a big-time program," Hills said. "Like, I realized this wasn't charity work. This was an actual ballplayer."

Kelley, a safety, was verbally committed to play football at Texas-San Antonio before his arrest and wrongful conviction. He tried to walk on to the Texas Longhorns in the beginning of 2017, but was told the team was not taking walk-ons that season.

His case gained popularity thanks to "Outcry," a five-hour Showtime documentary series released in July that focuses on his conviction and the six-year attempt to overturn it.


5954 5955 5956 5957 5958