Guthrie appealed the ruling, and the OSSAA's board of directors approved the appeal — with several conditions, one of which was Watkins' eight-game suspension.
Watkins, as co-athletic director, took full responsibility for the mistakes made in Simek's move. He stood and suggested his own suspension during the appeal process.
Guthrie senior running back Luke Davis was the star of the day Saturday. He rushed for 179 yards and five touchdowns.
“We still really appreciate what coach did for us, and it's great knowing he's up there cheering us on,” Davis said.
Watkins can coach during the week and help game plan, but cannot have any contact with the players on gamedays until the game is over.
“The coaches did a great job,” Watkins said. “We hadn't faced an adversity — on the field — since Carl Albert, and to have that interception for a touchdown on the first drive, it rattled the kids a little bit. But I was proud of how they went back down and scored.”
Watkins came onto the field Saturday after the final second ticked off the clock, and was bear-hugged by several players, who tried to pick him up.
“It all goes back to the kids,” said Beeby, who is serving as the team's game day coordinator during Watkins' suspension.
“It's their execution. Once we get to this point, the hay's in the barn. You've got the coaching in during the week and they have to go out and execute it.”