“The biggest thing I’m proud of him for is that he had tutors, and after surgery they came consistently,” Kelley said. “I was amazed he got caught up before the end of the school year and did very well because he was in honors classes. They wanted to drop him down and I said no. I know my son, he’s very driven. I knew that would give him confidence to get back on track, and that he could do it. I knew this would be much better if he didn’t lose anything by not dropping classes that he had started.”
Having conquered the academic component of the student-athlete part of his life, he was finally able to dive into the physical activities he had longed for and began lifting weights with his football teammates after school.
In August, he was able to return to the practice field with his teammates and continue on with his football and the sport he loved most.
“I went to the lifting at the school almost every day I could from 5-8, and it was surprising what I could do compared to before,” said Coye of how he began to overcome the muscle atrophy. “I could barely lift the bar, but I worked my way up pretty quickly. It was tough getting all my core strength because they literally cut my stomach open. A few days after the surgery, it was impossible to get myself up from bed, but they kept me moving because they were worried about fluid getting into my lungs and being in bed too long could cause pneumonia, so I did laps around the hospital.
“I’ve played football since I was a little kid way back in the second grade,” Coye said. “I didn’t want to stop playing.”