Greg Kelley, a standout Texas high school football player who in 2014 was wrongfully convicted of super aggravated sexual assault of a child and sent to a Texas prison with two concurrent 25-year prison terms with no chance of parole, will finally be returning to the football field with a scholarship from Eastern Michigan University.
Kelley, who had committed to play at UT-San Antonio back in high school, shared the big news Saturday on Instagram. “The moment when you finally know what it feels like to be 19, 20 and 21 years old,” Kelley wrote. “These years were stripped from me. I went from being a kid to learning how to be a man really fast. I am absolutely blessed to be able to finally live these years at 25 years old. Only God can do this.
After proving his innocence in the molestation case, Kelley was released from prison in 2017. His case was documented by the Showtime series, “Outcry.” The case centered on claims by two children who were part of a childcare facility being run by a mother of Kelley’s friend. Shama McCarty and her family took in Greg, whose parents were suffering from medical issues. A four-year-old boy staying at McCarty’s daycare alleged a sexual assault and from there the case turned into Kelley’s worst nightmare. The University of Michigan law school lays out the case very well here.
After 12 hours of deliberation, the jury found Kelley guilty.
Now exonerated, Greg Kelley can get on with his life and that includes playing football when the Mid-American Conference returns to action.
“My husband was offered a D1 full ride scholarship to Eastern Michigan University,” Greg’s wife Gaebri wrote on Instagram. “It was a huge decision, but God guided every single step of the way in this process. He closed doors that needed to be closed and opened ones that Greg needed to enter. I said it in our vows…I’ll always be your #1 fan on and off the field. Keep writing that story for Gods glory! GO EAGLES!!! (PS you look good in green).”
Who was the coach that recruited Kelley to Eastern? None other than Neal Neathery, who recruited Kelley to play at UT-San Antonio.