Kenzel Kelly hopes to follow in his father's footsteps

Published: Oct. 13, 2019 at 3:12 AM EDT
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Since Day 1 in the shadow of the Golden Dome; Brian Kelly has been all about football and family.

"That's what so magical about this," Kelly said in his introductory press conference in 2009. "That my kids know this was a dream for me."

For Kelly's youngest Kenzel, a senior football player at St. Joe just a couple miles from that Dome, football is all he dreams about.

"I love football, when it's not football season, it's the longest time of the year," Kenzel said.

It's hard for Kenzel not to love the game, growing up on the sidelines at Notre Dame Stadium next to his Dad.

"He's such a big role model," Kenzel said. "It doesn't matter if he wins, loses, he goes it's not enough. It's never enough. if there's anyone who's shown me not to get complacent, it's him."

Now Kenzel wants to follow in his Dad's footsteps, and become a football coach.

"If I do love it, which I think I do, I think I will give it a try," Kenzel said.

His dad has other ideas.

"Oh, I do not want him to be a coach someday," Brian said. "I can tell you that."

"He just doesn't want everyone to think because that's what he does, that's what I want to do," Kenzel said. "He wants me to keep all my options open. But honestly, it runs in the family."

And Kenzel wants to be a part of the family business.

"I just like teaching," Kenzel said. "I like helping. The best thing in the world is when you see a kid who started out so rough and at the end of the season he's a finished product. I think that is so invaluable and I really like doing that."

One thing invaluable for his dad is finding time for his son.

"Those that say there is a balance are not telling the truth," Brian said. "It's trying to make the time that you have quality time. So doing things like that that are impactful, senior nights, things of that nature, is what's most important. And so I think that's what you try to do as a father, is to make those moments impactful when you get the opportunity."