CISCO — Jailynn Humphries’ senior football season started like a fairy tale.
Two years after doctors said he wouldn’t walk again, Humphries returned to the gridiron with his Cisco teammates and ran for 225 yards in the team’s season opener.
The next Friday was more akin to a nightmare.
Humphries re-aggravated his back, throwing the remainder of the season in question. It was a gut punch for Humphries — and everyone who had watched the running back work his way back to playing the sport he loves.
“Here we go again,” Loboes coach Brent West thought.
Doctors had mixed opinions on whether Humphries could — or should — play anymore football. But the senior wasn’t about to let his final season slip away.
“It was a point where I was like, ‘Dang, I’m back to where I started,’ Humphries said. “I got discouraged a little bit, I’m not going to lie. But that was only for a few moments. I was like, ‘No, I can get through it.’ I can do it.
“I’m going to get back sooner or later.”
From the track to a wheelchair
Humphries is also a member of the Cisco track team. It was during his first high school meet that he was injured, though he didn’t realize the severity at the time.
“I was triple-jumping, and I tripped up, caught my foot and I landed on the base of the runner board,” Humphries said. “It was concrete, and so that did a number to my back. I really didn’t see any point in going to the doctor’s or anything, so I just kept working through the pain. No pain, no gain, right?
“Little by little, it just gave out.”
The injury lingered for months. Finally, in August before his sophomore year, the damage was so serious Humphries found himself in the hospital for three weeks, unable to move his legs.
After spending five hours in a car on the way to a vacation, everything had come to a head.