OXFORD, Miss. — Chad Kelly's immaturity at Clemson cost him. He's the first to admit it and regrets his behavior.
But he's also a firm believer that things happen for a reason, and he wouldn't trade places with any quarterback in the country right now, including his former Clemson teammate and one of the frontrunners for the 2016 Heisman Trophy, Deshaun Watson.
"God acts in mysterious ways, and I could have acted a lot better there and maybe things would have been different," said Kelly, who's coming off a record-setting season at Ole Miss. "It was just me being young and immature. I'm a totally different person now. It would have been crazy if we were on the same team, but that's not the way things worked out.
"I just know this is where I'm supposed to be."
The SEC has been a haven for second-chance quarterbacks over the years. At Auburn, Cam Newton won a national championship in 2010, and Nick Marshall played for one in 2013. Zach Mettenberger became the only quarterback in LSU history to throw for 2,500 yards or more in back-to-back seasons in 2012 and 2013. And most recently, Jake Coker found a new home at Alabama after it didn't work out for him at Florida State and helped the Crimson Tide win its fourth national championship in the past seven years.
"I think we've been a good fit for Chad, and he's been a good fit for us," Ole Miss coach Hugh Freeze said.
Click here for the rest of Chris Low's story on Kelly's journey and where it goes from here.