In 1957, after playing football at Cisco Junior College, Louis Kelley became a part of the NMSU football team and contributed to their 1959 Sun Bowl Victory. That same year he was also voted the Aggie football team’s Most Valuable Player. Kelley honorably filled his responsibility as the team’s fullback creating holes for the halfbacks and protecting the quarterback who would all move on to careers in the NFL. It is those teammates, among others, who nominated and voted Kelley the team’s MVP for his determination, passion, hard work, high fives, and humor, as reported by NMSU Athletics. To this day, his teammates hail his selfless and humble attitude. Mr. Kelley graduated in 1961 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Physical Education and became a prominent high school educator and coach.
This character of Louis Kelley carried over into his outstanding football coaching career of 40 plus years. He worked as assistant coach for eight years before becoming head coach at Lubbock Dunbar for six years, 1969-1974, and then Lubbock Estacado for 26 years, 1975-2001. He finished his career record at 235-111-8 and was the 10th winningest coach in Texas high school history. Kelley’s Estacado teams won 15 district championships and made 15 playoff appearances due in part to Kelley’s transformational leadership and inspiration. He is an advocate educator who works hard to inspire his students and athletes to succeed on the field and in academics. The Lubbock Avalanche Journal named him the All-City Coach of the Century in 1999 and Coach of the Year eight times in honor of his outstanding coaching. Louis Kelley has represented NMSU well through his exemplary character and his years of incredible work with high school football teams in Texas.