Greg Kelley to play football at Eastern Michigan after full scholarship offer

Local Sports

Greg Kelley from his Instagram (Courtesy Greg Kelley)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Greg Kelley, the Leander man who spent three years in prison for a now overturned conviction of sexual assault of a child, says he has received a full scholarship offer to play football at Eastern Michigan University, according to his Instagram.

In his Instagram post, Kelley said — “I want to thank everyone at @easternmichigan for giving me this opportunity to play the game I love again. I missed it so much and I can’t wait to pad up this week!”

Kelley was convicted in 2014 and sentenced to 25 years in prison on an aggravated sexual assault against a child charge. However, in 2017 his defense argued another suspect could have been responsible for the crime which prompted prosecutors to take another look at the case. Kelley was released on bond pending an appeal when a Williamson County judge declared him innocent.

The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals overturned Kelley’s conviction and District Judge Donna King approved it on Nov. 27, 2019. In May, he filed a lawsuit against the city of Cedar Park, former Cedar Park Police Chief Sean Mannix and the former police detective who arrested him.

In July, Showtime released a five-part docuseries, called Outcry, on Kelley’s case.

Following his exoneration, Kelley announced he was accepted to the University of Texas at Austin in December 2019 and stated his intentions of playing football again. In high school, Kelley was a talented defensive back with interest from schools like Texas State, Rice and UT-San Antonio.

Kelley told KXAN he tried out for a walk-on spot with the Longhorns in February, but he wasn’t part of the 2020 Longhorns roster.

Another Instagram post shows Kelley smiling inside Eastern Michigan’s locker room, celebrating his opportunity as a 25-year-old.

“The moment when you finally know what it feels like to be 19, 20 and 21-years-old. 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,” Kelley said in his post.

Eastern Michigan is a Division I Football Bowl Subdivision school that plays in the Mid-American Conference. The MAC postponed all fall sports due to the COVID-19 pandemic in August, but there is momentum toward a schedule change. Conference leaders are exploring options for a delayed start to the season, according to multiple national reports.

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