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Photo by Lia Musgrave, TexAgs
Texas A&M Football

Making Dad proud: On and off the field, Kenyon Green is celebrated by family

August 19, 2020

It's a father's job to provide wisdom, guidance and perspective.

Henry Green did his job in one memorable conversation with his then-14-year-old son, Kenyon.

As a freshman at Atascocita High School in Houston, Kenyon Green was already 6-3 and weighed about 260 pounds. His athletic ability was also evident. He was becoming an accomplished defensive lineman on the Eagles' football team.

Despite that, Henry Green recalled a day in which Atascocita coach Craig Stump approached him with a surprising request.

"Coach Stump pulled me aside and said, 'Mr. Green, can you do me a favor?'" Henry said. "He asked me to talk to Kenyon about playing left tackle."

Left tackle? Offensive linemen are the epitome of obscurity. They're the steel-belted tires of the offensive machine — essential but frequently overlooked. Tires are vital but aren't sexy.

There are no statistics by which to measure offensive linemen. At least defensive linemen can accumulate tackles, sacks and pressures. Offensive linemen have no stats. Well, except for pancakes, but average fans may think that refers to breakfast instead of blocks.

Henry Green was all too familiar with that obscurity. He'd played guard at Grambling University. He thought his son might be apprehensive about shifting to offense.

He was right. The suggestion was not enthusiastically accepted. But Henry became something of an insurance salesman to offer his son some sage advice.

"I told him if you're going to have a Maserati, you've got to have insurance."
- Kenyon Green's father, Henry

"He was kind of bummed," Henry recalled. "I told him to start doing your research on the (professional) longevity of a defensive tackle versus an offensive lineman. I asked him, 'What's the highest-paid position on the field?' He said, 'Quarterback.' So, I said, what's the second-highest? 'Offensive tackle.'

"I told him if you're going to have a Maserati, you've got to have insurance."

Of course, in that analogy, the Maserati is the quarterback. Kenyon is Geico.

Kenyon was convinced.

He'd shift to offense, become a five-star prospect, sign with Texas A&M in 2019 and become an immediate starter at right guard as a true freshman. He'll remain inside this season with Dan Moore and Carson Green returning as starters at tackle.

"Right now, this year, because of our two tackles coming back, we have him at guard," Texas A&M coach Jimbo Fisher said. "We actually have him at left guard. We've flipped him to left guard and (Jared) Hocker to right guard right now.

"He's playing guard. He will play tackle also. We'll move guys around in case injuries occur and things like that and have them do multiple things."

Left tackle is considered Kenyon's natural position. But he's a team player —always has been. He'll do whatever is asked, regardless if by Stump or Fisher or the church choir director.

"He used to sing in the choir at church," Henry said. "You know, some kids are embarrassed to get in front of people. He used to be kind of shy, but he had a pretty good voice."

That attitude explains why there have been no voices of discontent that Kenyon is expected to remain at guard this season even though senior left tackle Dan Moore struggled last year.

The Aggies have allowed 69 sacks over the last two seasons, so there has been speculation that Kenyon and Moore might switch positions, or Kenyon could move to tackle if someone else emerged at guard.

Lia Musgrave, TexAgs
Kenyon Green (55) found immediate playing time along the Aggies' offensive line as a freshman in 2019.

"It just depends on where the team needs him the most," Henry said. "He can play anywhere."

Kenyon's had that attitude since he was playing Pee Wee football for the Outlaws select team. There, he was instructed by a cadre of coaches that included Henry as well as men named Patrick Morris, Mark Domio, Thyrun Hurst, Sean Davault, James Manuel and Harvey Williams.

Yes, THAT Harvey Williams — the former Hempstead running back who jilted Texas A&M at the last minute in 1986 and signed with LSU.

"It takes a village to raise a child," Henry said. "The simple fact is we had a village of grown men. Harvey taught Kenyon a lot."

Kenyon got more tutelage at home. His mother, Shalonda, played volleyball at UCLA. A younger sister, Kamirah, is a 6-foot high school freshman who plays basketball and puts the shot.

His grandparents, Deborah and James White, have been a significant influence, too.

"His grandmother gives him devotions every day," Henry said. "His grandfather is the loudest at every game. He's always ringing a cowbell."

Whether it's starring in football or the 3.8 GPA from his first year at A&M, Kenyon has provided his family many reasons to celebrate.

"The one thing that I really think highly of him is he's a God-fearing young man," Henry said. "He never gave me a sleepless night. He never got in any trouble. He makes me very proud."

Any father could understand. Expressing pride in your child is also part of the job.

Discussion from...

Making Dad proud: On and off the field, Kenyon Green is celebrated by family

3,941 Views | 2 Replies | Last: 8 mo ago by BennyBlancoFromTheBright
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Hopefully we can find a stellar center to play between Green and Hocker. If the center position improves, our whole offense will improve tremendously in 2020.
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Good write up!
Rooting for the kid.
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