Xavier Kelly almost chose basketball over football


by - Assoc. Editor -
Recruiting Home Search Recruits Recruiting Board 2022 Top Targets
Xavier Kelly Photo
Xavier Kelly - Defensive End
TigerNet: (4.48)

Height: 6-5   Weight: 255   Hometown: Wichita, KS (East HS)   Class: 2016
ESPN:
Rivals:
Scout:
24/7:

Clemson 2016 defensive end commit Xavier Kelly had always had thoughts of himself as a future college basketball player.

“I played football starting in kindergarten, always playing a year up,” Kelly said via The Wichita Eagle newspaper. “But I envisioned myself playing college basketball. I wasn’t too big into football.”

His high school coach Brian Byers persuaded him to give football a chance.

“He said, ‘I need you to come out for football.’ I really wasn’t feeling football,” Kelly said. “He said, ‘Come out for one practice. If you don’t like it, you don’t have to come play. He said to me, even before I got any offers, he said he sees a Division I athlete in me.”

Byers knew that with his size and agility, Kelly had an opportunity to be a dominant high school football player.

“I think there was a lot of people telling him that he was a big-time basketball player,” Byers said. “I looked at him. ‘You’re 6-foot-5 and a post player. That’s not Division I.… You’re definitely a Division I, big-time football player, though.’”

As a junior, Kelly had 42 tackles, 10 for loss, and eight sacks.

Kelly will play his senior season in basketball to defend his school's Class 6A state title and then enroll at Clemson in the fall.

His total list of offers include Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, Baylor, Clemson, Colorado, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kansas State, LSU, Miami, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Notre Dame, Oregon, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Penn State, TCU, Tennessee, Texas A&M, Texas Tech and Wisconsin. Clemson offered on 3/25/15 after he de-committed from Kansas State on 3/21/15.

Comment on this story
Print   
Send Feedback to Tony Crumpton: Email | Comment
Tommy Bowden recalls why he brought Dabo Swinney back into coaching role
Tommy Bowden recalls why he brought Dabo Swinney back into coaching role
WATCH: Tigers LB Trenton Simpson shows off his latest Clemson gear
WATCH: Tigers LB Trenton Simpson shows off his latest Clemson gear
WATCH: Wilkins heads home to bring along next generation in football
WATCH: Wilkins heads home to bring along next generation in football
Clemson pitcher signs with MLB team
Clemson pitcher signs with MLB team
State
Position
Last Name
Post your comments!

Sign Up for E-Mail News Alerts
Features
Breaking
Daily Digest