SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — A Glendale High School quarterback was in court today asking a judge to decide whether he can take the field on Friday nights.
Kylan Mabins was in civil court Sept. 19 after being ruled ineligible by the Missouri State High School Activities Association (MSHAA) when he transferred from Kickapoo High School to Glendale ahead of his senior year.
The conflict is related to why Mabins transferred to Glendale. His attorneys say it’s because he endured racial discrimination at Kickapoo. Attorneys for MSHAA and Springfield Public Schools implied his transfer wasn’t related to that, but football-related after he previously had trained with people close to Glendale’s program.
Mabins’ lawsuit also alleges that SPS provided inaccurate information to the MSHAA committee that investigated his transfer.
“What was really significant today was all the falsities and inaccuracies that Kickapoo gave MSHAA came to light,” said Jay Kirksey, attorney for Mabins. “So much so that MSHAA admitted, had [it] known the truth, [its] letter denying Kylan’s eligibility would have been different.”
Judge Derek Ankrom heard from Scot Phillips, the Athletic Director at Kickapoo, Nate Thomas, Kickapoo’s Head Football Coach, Isaac Isaia, the Athletic Director for Glendale and Josh Scott with SPS.
Phillips told the courtroom he did not recall racial comments or racial discrimination when the initial transfer request came in March of this year.
Mabins’ former coach, Nate Thomas, told attorneys he was never made aware of any racial discrimination but rather a singular homophobic comment made during Mabins’ tenure that was addressed in the past.
Thomas talked about a set of photos of Mabins training with the Mauk family, who have previously been tied to Glendale’s program and inferred to the courtroom an idea of players leaving for only athletic reasons, saying that “three of my last quarterbacks went to Glendale” and denies any toxic culture at Kickapoo.
Isaia made a brief appearance in court. He said he was working towards documents of hardship that outlined Mabins’ circumstance as “unavoidable and unforeseen.”
Attorney Ransom Ellis, who is representing MSHSAA, said the judge is expected to issue a written ruling by noon on Friday.