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Cameron Kinley: Navy denies football team captain’s request to delay service and try to play in the NFL

Kinley, Navy’s 2021 class president who graduated final month, had signed with the Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers as an undrafted rookie cornerback and attended the team’s rookie minicamp two weeks in the past. But in a statement on his Twitter on Monday, he mentioned the Secretary of the Navy had denied his request to delay his army service and mentioned that he’s being required to fee in the US Navy as an Ensign.

“I’ve spent the previous week processing my feelings, as it is vitally troublesome to have been this shut to reaching a childhood dream and having it taken away from me,” he mentioned.

In an announcement to CNN, a spokesman for the Secretary of the Navy mentioned appearing Secretary Thomas W. Harker declined to ahead delay requests from latest Navy graduates to the Secretary of Defense.

“When college students settle for admission and proceed their schooling in this program, there’s an understanding and acknowledgement that they are going to upon commencement be commissioned,” Capt. Jereal Dorsey wrote in the assertion. “Every Midshipman attends on the similar phrases and every has the similar duty to serve. Exceptions to that dedication to serve have been rightfully uncommon.”

Cameron Kinley was captain of the US Naval Academy's football team this past year.

The co-founder of Divine Sports and Entertainment, which represents Kinley, mentioned the Navy additionally denied him the alternative to enchantment the resolution.

“He needs to fulfill each of his childhood goals, taking part in in the NFL and honorably serving his nation,” co-founder Ryan Williams-Jenkins mentioned.

The Navy’s denial is a part of a coverage that has modified repeatedly in latest years. Graduates of the service academies are usually required to serve in lively responsibility for 5 years after commencement.

During the Obama Administration, although, then-Secretary of Defense Ash Carter issued a coverage that allowed some service academy athletes to be positioned on reserve standing in order to play for professional sports activities groups. The Trump Administration rescinded that policy in 2017 underneath Defense Secretary James Mattis however then reversed positions in 2019 after Trump talked about the difficulty throughout a White House ceremony with Army’s football team.
Army to allow West Point graduate to sign NFL contract
In distinction to the Navy’s denial, 4 graduates from different service academies have been allowed to forego their service dedication this yr. The 4 are Jon Rhattigan, a West Point grad who signed with the Seattle Seahawks; Nolan Laufenberg, an Air Force grad who signed with the Denver Broncos; George Silvanic, an Air Force grad who signed with the Los Angeles Rams; and Parker Ferguson, an Air Force grad who signed with the New York Jets.

“While I acknowledge that these males are from totally different branches of the armed companies, it puzzles me as to why I’m the solely particular person to be denied this chance,” Kinley wrote in his assertion.

“I’m very conscious of the dedication that I made to service after I first arrived at the United States Naval Academy. I look ahead to my profession as a naval officer in the data warfare group. However, I’m deserving of the alternative to stay out one other certainly one of my life-long goals earlier than fulfilling my service requirement,” he added.

Kinley performed in 27 games over his four-year college career, totaling 88 whole tackles, one interception and 12 passes defended.

Quite a lot of Navy graduates have gone on to play in the NFL, most notably Hall of Fame quarterback Roger Staubach, who received two Super Bowls with the Dallas Cowboys in the Seventies. Three Navy graduates have been drafted by NFL groups in latest years, together with lengthy snapper Joe Cardona in 2015, receiver/operating again Keenan Reynolds in 2016 and operating again Malcolm Perry final yr.

CNN’s Jill Martin and Kevin Dotson contributed to this report.

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