MIDWEST CITY — Caleb Holland admits he was a little scared when the doctor started explaining the cause of the pain in Holland's abdomen.
A swollen spleen isn't exactly they type of injury you can tape up for a football game.
Holland missed the first two playoff games for Carl Albert, but returned last week and will play a key role on the Titans' formidable offensive line in the Class 5A state championship game at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at Boone Pickens Stadium in Stillwater.
“We're happy to have him back,” quarterback Steven Thompson. “He's the main piece on our offensive line, and we need all of those guys. They're the key to our offense. When they do their job, we'll probably win games. They've been perfect lately.”
Holland found out the day of the first-round playoff game at Del City that he wouldn't be able to play because of his spleen condition.
“I had a risk of a ruptured spleen,” he said. “I had practiced all that week, but I hadn't been felling good, so I knew something was up. But I was just being stubborn and ignoring it.
“When I got told how serious it was, I was scared, and disappointed I couldn't play.”
Holland, a 6-foot-1, 252-pound senior, is receiving Division I recruiting interest as an interior lineman, but he's vital for the Titans at tackle. He still has no idea what caused the spleen to swell, but he was medically cleared in time to practice all last week before the semifinal game.