In addition to being a 157-pound cornerback, Keenan Lewis was a kick and punt returner his senior season at O. Perry Walker High School in New Orleans. And a pretty good one, too, according to one of his former coaches.
But, after the third game of the 2003 season, Chargers coach Frank Wilson decided he needed to find a way to get the fastest player on his team on the field. So he replaced Lewis with a junior wide receiver named Mike Wallace.
“The rest, as they say, is history,” said David Johnson, who was the offensive coordinator/wide receivers coach at Perry Walker. “Keenan never returned a kick again.”
That was the beginning of Wallace’s career as a return specialist, and all he did his senior season in high school was return four kickoffs for touchdowns, four punts for touchdowns, and have another seven called back. It was part of a spectacular season in which he scored 27 touchdowns for the Chargers and accepted a scholarship to Oregon State.