Conley Wilkins is the Eastern Kansas Legue’s leading rusher, the focal point of Blue Valley West’s vaunted offense, and one of the best backs in the state.
He’s also the creator of the Going Off Party.
In an election year, Wilkins isn’t the leader of a new political faction, or some new special interest group.
So what exactly is a Going Off Party?
Wilkins laughs as he tells the story. A conversation during the week leading up to the Jaguars’ matchup with EKL rival Bishop Miege. “One of our receivers said, ‘are you going to have a going off party?’ From there, it just spread.”
Like many epic bashes, The Going Off Party was a night Wilkins hoped would never end. The Class of 2013 running back posted personal bests for rushing yards, touchdowns, and career long scoring run on October 4th. He gashed the Stags’ defense for 304 yards, with touchdowns of 89, 34, 60, and 5 yards.
Easily one of the most impressive high school performances of the season in Kansas City, Wilkins believed all along this kind of thing was possible.
“I knew we had something special going on this year,” he says, smiling. “I had a feeling we would have a lot of success. With our offensive line this year, anything could happen.”
As a junior, Wilkins earned an Honorable Mention to the All-Eastern Kansas League squad, with 1,234 yards on 221 carries, scoring 14 times in 2011. After that, Wilkins only wanted one thing: “to be better than I was last year.”
Wilkins worked hard in the off-season to do just that. At the National Underclassmen Combine, he ran an electronic-timed 4.5 second 40-yard dash, and logged a 34-inch vertical leap. He entered the season in prime shape, standing 5-foot-10, 187-pounds.
“I like making guys miss,” Wilkins says of his running style. “But, at the same time, I like running over them, too. Carry the ball high and tight, use different moves, use my speed to get to the outside, and just leave guys in the dust.”
Wilkins sums it up with what has become something of a personal mantra: “I have to focus on being better than I was last week.”
Wilkins rolled up 1,551 yards and 14 touchdowns, averaging 7.5 yards per carry, while leading the Jaguars to a one loss regular season and the program’s first playoff berth since Coach Scott Wright guided his team to the 2007 Class 5A State Championship.
After losing in double-overtime in the Sectional Championships, Wilkins is turning his attention to finding a home at the collegiate level.
“Whatever feels comfortable family-wise, if I will get to play, stuff like that will be the biggest factors,” he says, nodding his head.
“I’d like to stay in the Midwest, but, I’ll go anywhere to play football.”
Anywhere he can throw a few more Going Off Parties.