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Amid varsity jacket controversy, special needs teen to visit SA

Kansas basketball player to watch Scorpions game from bench

SAN ANTONIO – Many across the country were outraged by the story of 19-year-old Michael Kelley.

Kelley, who has special needs, plays for an extra-curricular basketball team in his hometown of Wichita, Kansas.

To encourage her son, Kelley's mother bought him a letter jacket that was similar to those worn by varsity athletes at his school.

After wearing the jacket, however, his school asked him to remove it, because he was not a varsity player.

It is an act that started a nationwide discussion, but also caught the attention of San Antonio Scorpions owner Gordon Hartman.

"I just thought it was ridiculous," said Hartman.

So Hartman decided to act.

In a move that defined Hartman's "Soccer for a Cause" program, he flew Kelley, a big sports fan, and his family to San Antonio to watch the Scorpions play on Saturday.

Not only will Kelley be attending the Scorpions home-opener, he'll also be on the bench, in uniform, with the team. 

Hartman said Kelley would also sign a contract to make him an official member of the team.

In addition, he will also receive an honorary ring to celebrate the Scorpions 2014 Championship, and most importantly, a new jacket, complete with a Scorpions logo.

"He'll be No. 33, because that's his basketball number," said Hartman.

In the end, however, the Scorpions game may not be what Kelley is most excited about.

"(The Kelley family) said that they had been saving money for two years to try to bring Michael to Morgan's Wonderland, and so when we heard this, it was almost like wow -- this is incredible," said Hartman.

Kelley will be visiting Morgan's Wonderland Saturday morning and attending the soccer game Saturday night. His family will also get a chance to explore San Antonio before leaving on Tuesday. 


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