Ken Kelley coached the Javelina track and field team to two Lone Star Conference championships, the only such titles in the history of the sport. He was inducted into the Javelina Hall of Fame in 1996.
He was the head track and field coach in 1966-72. During that period, he coached two LSC title teams (1969 and 1970).
Kelley was named the LSC Coach of the Year and NAIA District Coach of the Year in 1969 and 1970.
The 1968 Javelinas won five conference gold medals and the 1970 squad dominated the league meet, winning nine events.
His 1969 team finished fourth at the NAIA national meet in Montana. Bob Daniels, a 120-yard hurdler, took the national championship at the 1969 national NAIA meet.
Kelley joins several of his former athletes in the Hall of Fame. These include Homer Martinez, Robert Gonzales, Dwight Harrison, Earnest Haynes and James Hill.
Most of the school records, in yards, were set during Kelley’s tenure as coach.
A graduate of Brackenridge High School in San Antonio, Kelley received his bachelor’s degree from North Texas State and a master’s degree from Southwest Texas State.
Prior to joining the Texas A&I staff, he was a successful high school coach at San Antonio Jefferson and Texas City.
While at North Texas, Kelley won the Kansas Relays decathlon in 1957 and finished fifth in the national decathlon trials that same season. He was eighth in the U.S. Olympic trials in 1956.
When he was named LSC spring coach of the year in 1969 and 1970, he became the first league mentor to be so honored.
After leaving Texas A&I in 1972, he was a coach at H.M. King High School in Kingsville for three years, serving as track coach and assistant football coach.
In 1976, he entered the restaurant business, as an owner and part-owner of four Kettle Restaurants. He has been owner or part-owner of as many as 15 of the restaurants and currently has 11.
He is married to the former Barbara Dempsey of San Antonio.