WACO, Texas (KWTX A Baylor graduate who has overcome odds throughout his life after losing his right arm in an accident as a child has joined an elite club in professional sports as part of the staff of the Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs.
Porter Ellet and his wife Carlie after the Chiefs' win. (Courtesy photo)
Porter Ellett, 30, a 2017 graduate of the Baylor’s master’s program in education sports management, was front and center on sports biggest stage serving as senior assistant to head coach Andy Reid as the Chiefs defeated the San Francisco 49ers 31-20 in Super Bowl LIV Sunday night.
“It’s amazing,” Porter said.
“There is only one team at the end of the year. I don’t really think it will sink in until I have a moment to sit down with my wife and talk about it.”
Ellett’s road to the Super Bowl hasn’t been an easy one.
The Loa, Utah native lost the use of his right arm when he was 4 after he was thrown from a pickup truck while working sheep.
He suffered a severe head injury and significant nerve damage.
By the time he was 16, his arm had been amputated.
Despite the disability, Ellett played pretty much every sport, except for football, which wasn’t offered because the small size of his high school.
But while in college at Brigham Young University, Ellett fell in love with the game and never looked back.
His career path brought him and his wife, Carlie, to Waco where Ellett pursued the master’s degree in sports management.
Through a chance encounter with Coach Andy Reid, Porter was offered a job while still in school at Baylor.
Porter says he owes much of his good fortune to Baylor University for supporting him when he decided to leave the program in Waco early to pursue his dream while continuing his education online.
“Coach Reid, in the middle of schooling was like ‘well you need to finish that’ and I said ‘let me go talk to my professors.’ My professors said ‘no you’ve got to take it. You can finish (the degree) online,’” he said.
“If they wouldn’t have been as flexible I don’t know if I would have gotten that degree or if coach would have been willing to hire me.”
Ellett said the Super Bowl win was surreal.
Many of his family members including his wife, his parents and in-laws were at the game to support him while many friends and former classmates back in Waco were gathered at watch parties, donned in Chiefs’ gear, while sending him messages of good luck.
“They’re the best. All of them are awesome. The people in Waco are amazing. There’s really no place like it,” Ellett said.
Following the Chiefs’ first Super Bowl win in 50 years, Ellett stayed on the field for a long time soaking in the moment where he embraced Reid, the person with whom he spends more time than anyone on staff.
He says it was a moment he’ll never forget.
“I gave him a hug and said ‘congrats’ and you could just see how happy and how proud he is,” Ellett said.
The players and staff then gathered in the locker room where Reid addressed the team.
“He just said ‘wow, unbelievable.’”
Ellett along with the rest of the team and staff was treated to an after party with Pitt Bull and Flo Rida that went on until the wee hours of Monday morning.
The team was scheduled to depart Miami at noon Monday, bound for Kansas City.
Porter said he had a text exchange with Reid that was memorable.
“I asked him if we needed to wear suits because we always do,” he said. “And he said ‘no, you can just go casual’ and for him that’s a big deal.”
Ellett said when the team returns they’ll have the rest of the day to regroup before returning to the office Tuesday for exit interviews and to find out details of planned celebrations including the parade.
And then, within hours of winning it all, the Chiefs will be looking ahead to the upcoming season as reigning Super Bowl champs.
“We’ve got combine coming up soon,” Ellett said. “And we’ve got to get ready.”