WASHINGTON (CBS) — A Temple University football recruit who says he was kicked off his high school team because he is homeless has been offered a home.
Jamal Speaks, an 18-year-old senior at Ballou High School in Washington, D.C., told WRC-TV that he was kicked off the team during a game on Saturday because he doesn’t have a permanent home. However, the Covenant House Greater Washington offered Speaks a home and now he will be allowed back on the team.
“After hearing that Jamal was experiencing homelessness and at-risk of losing the ability to pursue his dream of attending college and playing football, I knew that CHGW had to help,” Dr. Madye Henson, the organization’s CEO, Dr. Madye Henson, told WRC-TV in a statement.
Speaks, who has an offer to play football at Temple, says he faced a similar problem two years ago, but it was sorted out. He currently doesn’t speak to his mother. And his father died.
“I already proved that I was a homeless resident,” Speaks told WRC-TV, adding that he sleeps on his friends’ couches.
D.C. Public Schools told the station that Speaks can now practice and play with his high school football team.
“With the best interest of the student and the entire Ballou Knights football team in mind, we are working with DCSAA to resolve this matter as quickly as possible,” the district told WRC-TV in a statement.
“It’s incumbent upon me to get this boy support he needs to not only play football but to be successful in life and go to college,” D.C. Councilmember Trayon White told WRC-TV.
Speaks hopes to graduate and play football at Temple.