Hard work helped turn HC’s Blevins into an all-state linebacker


Harlan County senior linebacker Hunter Blevins was named to the Courier Journal all-state football team on Wednesday. Blevins was a third-team selection after ranking first among 4A teams with 114 tackles.

By John Henson, Managing Editor

So, how did Hunter Blevins celebrate his selection to the Courier Journal all-state football team on Wednesday?
Blevins didn’t save time for celebration as he spent much of the day at the Harlan County High School track helping coaches and other team members create a sand pit for the upcoming spring season.

That workmanlike approach has served Blevins well in both sports and life, helping him during a strong senior season that saw him record 114 tackles in nine games to tie for the state lead among all 4A players. Blevins’ breakout season helped him earn third-team all-state honors on a team selected by the state’s coaches.
“Diesel has worked for everything he has earned,” Harlan County coach Eddie Creech said. “He worked his tail off in the classroom, in the weight room and the field. He is a shining example of a young man who wanted to play and put the work in to excel. His faith in the Lord and his character, I believe, was a vital part of his success. Harlan County football being represented on the third-team all-state shows the kind of work our kids put in. Diesel will be the type of kid coming back on the sidelines in the future rooting on his teammates. That is just the type of kid he is.”
Blevins said his all-state selection was a huge honor.
I’m so thankful to my family, coaches, friends and team. Hard work pays off and will get you whatever you want in life,” Blevins said.
Blevins was recognized as a team leader the past couple of seasons and was praised by the coaching staff for his leadership abilities.
“Honor is my way of life. I would rather live homeless and moneyless than live with no honor,” Blevins said. “And we are taught to honor God and honor family, so to me it is everything. I would rather have the things you can’t see like honor than anything material any day.”
A three-year starter, Blevins played on a regional championship team in 2017 and a district championship squad in 2018. His numbers improved each season, from 54 tackles as a sophomore to 81 last season to 114 in only nine games in a covid-shortened senior campaign. The Bears finished 3-6 and lost to defending state champ Johnson Central in the first round of the 4A playoffs.
“Despite our season being what it was, I am truly happy that we got too have one,” Blevins said. “It was very rough and you could tell we didn’t have spring workouts or we didn’t get to be in the weight room much. But I think what hurt us most was our chemistry and the inability to see each other on and off the field, from being in pods to work out in and staying in the house when we were not practicing. But despite that I think we did all we could with the hand we were dealt. I’m just happy I got too play. With all the dangers we had and even the fact the I got COVID about a week or two after our last game, I would truly do it all over again.”
Blevins Is also a track standout and is a state contender in the shot put in the spring. He said he plans to wait until after track season ends before deciding where he will attend college.