Kai Callins has something to prove to all those Division I schools that passed on the Guthrie running back.
Callins, a four-year starter for the Bluejays, signed to play with Division II Emporia State, Kan., on Wednesday after not receiving a scholarship offer from a Division I school.
Callins, who was instrumental in leading Guthrie to two state 5A championships, said several Division I schools were recruiting him before a knee injury derailed his junior season.
“I started seeing the D-I schools go away and eventually, they just disappeared,” Callins said. “They were afraid of my knee.”
As a sophomore, Callins was the MVP of the 2011 state 5A championship game against Lawton McArthur, scoring on a 49-yard touchdown run while playing quarterback and returning an interception 56 yards for another score.
His junior season ended abruptly in the Bluejays first game of the season against Duncan when he tore his ACL.
After a year of rehabilitation, Callins returned to the football field and had a phenomenal senior season, rushing for 1,736 yards and 31 touchdowns on the ground to set school records in both categories.
He was the MVP again of the 2013 state title game against McAlester, rushing for 234 yards and four touchdowns while also intercepting a pass as the Bluejays crushed the Buffaloes.
“I think he proved the knee was healthy,” Guthrie head football coach Rafe Watkins said.
Watkins thinks the Bluejays may have won three consecutive state titles if Callins hadn't gotten hurt.