Chris Riley: Following in his father's footsteps
6/15/2012 (Updated 6:56:34 PM)(Source: Travis Eldridge)
JOHNSON CITY -- For Chris Riley, soccer is in his blood, but despite playing professionally and developing quite a soccer resume, he's still in the shadows.
"Everybody knows Chris Riley as Ross Riley's son, not as Chris Riley the owner of the Greater Binghamton Footskills Academy or the Professional soccer player," Chris said.
His father may have a field named after him, but Chris is doing just as much if not more for the game of soccer in Broome County. A few years ago he started the Greater Binghamton Footskills Academy, and last year he was named the Maine-Endwell varsity soccer coach, but even that wasn't enough for him.
"There's thousands and thousands of kids that play every Saturday in that Dome, so just seeing the expressions from them," Chris said. "I felt bad for those kids who work so hard to go away and play college and they come home and lose so much with nothing to do in the summer."
He wanted to bring a team to Binghamton, a dream that, with the help of now team owner Bahij Kashou, came to life and they created the Greater Binghamton FC. Yet like before, Riley didn't want to just be a part owner.
"I thought I still had something left to give in the tank, and I'd played five years professionally, so it was just another chance for me to get back on the field, but it wasn't much thinking about me when I made the decision."
Even though it's been an up-and-down season for the Greater Binghamton FC, Chris knows he's making his father proud.
"I think he would have been in his glory. He would have loved this, he would have been here every step of the way volunteering his time. I mean I wish he was here to see it all, but as I said before, I know hes watching down.
What better way to honor his father than playing the sport he loved, on Father's Day.
Chris and the rest of the team host Cleveland before than traveling to play Buffalo on Sunday.
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