School Ties Wiki

David after Sally tells him she does not wish to be with him.

David Greene is a student at St. Matthew's Academy. He is recruited from Scranton, Pennsylvania, as the new quarterback for the school, kickstarting the events of the movie.


David is originally from a poorer area in Pennsylvania. At the beginning of the movie, it is learned that he is transferring to the prestigious St. Matthew's Academy, and that he was recruited for his exceptional abilities as a quarterback. On the day he is supposed to leave for St. Matt's, David gets in a fight with a motorcycle gang. This upsets his father, as he believes that David will ruin the opportunity he was given by fighting.

David is greeted by Coach McDevitt upon his arrival, who advises him to play his cards close to the vest. He also meets and quickly befriends his roommate Chris Reece, his teammates (Rip Van Kelt, Charlie Dillon, Jack Connors), and Mack McGivern. After the boys make an anti-semitic joke, David resolves to hide his Jewish identity during his tenure at St. Matt's.

David proves himself an outstanding quarterback, leading his team to victory. At a mixer, he meets Sally Wheeler, a beautiful young woman who Charlie Dillon regards as his girlfriend. David and Sally quickly become interested in each other, and embark on a relationship after she confirms that she is not going steady with Dillon and calls David to ask him on a date. David also supports McGivern through his breakdown, and he attempts to go after Mr. Cleary, blaming him for what happened to Mack.

David leads St. Matt's to a key victory against their historic rival St. Luke's Academy. After this victory, Charlie finds out about David being Jewish, which had previously been a very well kept secret. Dillon reveals this secret (leading David to punch him), which alienates David from his teammates and from Sally, who does not wish to be with him any longer because she feels that he lied about being Jewish. Chris Reece is the only member of the team who remains actively loyal to David, up until the end.

After this reveal, David is bullied and harassed by his classmates. Richard Collins, Charlie, and Chesty Smith are especially cruel to him, and it is implied that it was one of them that left the sign above David's bed bearing a swastika and "Go Home Jew".

David is one of two students (the other being Rip Van Kelt who notice Charlie Dillon using a crib sheet on the history exam. When Mr. Gierasch discovers the sheet, he gives the class a choice: the cheater must confess, or the whole class will fail. David gives Charlie an ultimatum, telling him that if he does not confess, David will turn him in to the headmaster himself. Dillon attempts to bribe him, but David does not accept the money.

Dillon accuses David of cheating before David could turn him in, and they fight. Van Kelt decides that it should be left up to a vote. Reece urges David not to comply with this vote, but David feels he has no choice. The class votes that David is the one who cheated, mostly out of prejudice against Jewish people. Reece, an unnamed student, and Jack Connors are the only people who vote that David would not cheat, and because they do not have a majority, David is found guilty and asked to turn himself in.

When David goes to turn himself in, he finds that Van Kelt has already told the headmaster that he saw Dillon cheat. Dillon is expelled and Van Kelt and David are absolved. As he leaves the school, Dillon tells David that he will still get into Harvard and that David will always be a Jew. David tells Dillon that he will always be a prick.


David is charming and good-natured. He fits in with his teammates at St. Matt's very quickly, and it is observed that he has both a good arm and a good sense of humor. David is also a good student, which was another, yet a secondary reason that he was recruited. He also has a quick temper, and he gets very physical very quickly, shown at the beginning during his fight with Kocus, when he lunged at cleary, and the times he attempted to fight Dillon.


David has 2 siblings, a younger sister named Sarah, and a brother named Peter. His father is named Alan Greene, and it is implied he works at the factory. Not much else is known about David's family.


Charlie Dillon[]

David and Charlie always had a tense relationship. It was quite strained between them from the beginning, and after David started dating Sally, and Dillon found out that David was Jewish, he used this to isolate David out of jealousy. He also tried to buy David's silence about the crib sheet.

Chris Reece[]

Chris and David got on well from the beginning. After David was alienated from the other students, Reece tried to reassure him that it wasn't a big deal. Reece stood by David's side for the rest of the movie, trying to defend him from prejudiced comments and remarks. Reece tried to fight McGoo for making bigoted comments about David, and he also voted that David did not cheat on the history exam.

Rip Van Kelt[]

Rip and David did not have a particularly close relationship, but they ended on good terms. When David was revealed to be Jewish, Rip didn't make any comments, but he was complicit to the anti-semitism that David received. Rip allowed the vote to go on despite having seen Dillon cheat with his own eyes, but he eventually turned Dillon in and apologized to David.

Sally Wheeler[]

Sally and David were together but never official. At first, David was hesitant to pursue Sally because he heard that she was in a relationship with Dillon. After Sally assured David she was single, they went on a date and she kissed him on the cheek. David and Sally also kissed at the club after the victory against St. Luke's. When Sally learned that David was Jewish, she felt lied to, and no longer wanted to be with him.

Mack McGivern[]

When Mack had a breakdown due to Mr. Cleary's pushing, David helped him through it, repeating the passage along with him. David also attempted to attack Mr. Cleary, as he blamed him for what Mack went through.

Jack Connors[]

David and Connors were friends before it was revealed that David was Jewish. When David attempted to put his hand on Jack's shoulder, he shrugged it off violently. At the end of the movie, Connors sided with David, saying he didn't cheat. However, he also proclaimed himself to be an anti-semite.


McGoo constantly harassed David, along with Chesty Smith. He made many prejudiced comments, and Reece eventually tried to fight him for this.