Extra Points: Brian Spano 5/29

Brian Spano

By Brian Spano PrepsKC Senior Writer
Posted: May 29, 2012 - 6:49 AM



As I’m watching all of these high school graduations going on around me, I’m reminded of my own—way back when—and get a bit sentimental.
 
I guess what makes me even more nostalgic is to see a group of high school football players exit this stage of their life and move on to the next level, whether it be for more football at the collegiate level, simply to focus on their education without the game or to enter the workforce.
 
Every year a class of seniors graduates only to be replenished by a fresh crop of up-and-coming athletes. Coaches who coached their sons, their neighbors, their neighbor’s son or just some kid who wanted to play for the simple love of the game, are all part of that continued cycle.
 
This fall, a new group of talented kids will begin their high school football careers while the ghosts of those who have gone before them will be only a memory.
 
Sure coaches will talk about them, their greatness, what they have meant to the school, the team and the sport. But this will become the opportunity for the new player to become the next legend, to make their mark for their school, their team and their sport.
 
While I continue to wax poetic, I find it amazing, regardless of the sport, but football in particular, that the game marches on through the schools each year as talented kids graduate and move on to bigger and better things.
 
So much football talent has come through these parts over the years, and so much more is yet to come.
Since I began covering football many, many years ago, I have seen some unbelievable football players come through this town and some unbelievable performances. There are way too many to name, so this won’t be a complete list, and having cut my teeth covering the game on the Missouri side, this list will have a bent toward that side of the state line. Here are some of the great ones I’ve seen:
  • Kenyon Rasheed
  • Tony Temple
  • Jason Belser
  • Ladell Betts
  • Bubba Starling
  • Evan Boehm
  • Brandon Lloyd
  • Michael Keck
OK, I’ll repeat that this list is far and away not complete, but these are the players I saw play at the top of their game over the years, and in the blink of an eye, their career was over.
 
When you see players like this, you wish you could see it go on forever. You wish they could play and win for their school forever. Then you remember, there’s that new, fresh, young group of kids, waiting in the wings. Waiting to fill the shoes of those that walked before them.
 
It’s the beauty of the sport. High school football is perpetual, and while we sit here in the warm spring as the seniors graduate and move on, we can feel comfort in the fact that there will be someone else to root for. There will be someone else to score the touchdown. There will be someone else to make the tackle.
 
Football is almost here.