View From the Press Box: Dion Clisso 7/3

Dion Clisso

By Dion Clisso PrepsKC Managing Editor
Posted: July 3, 2012 - 8:14 AM

As we hit the midpoint of summer it is always good to look back and see what some of the bigger happenings have been.
The summer can be much like the heat of the desert, or the heat of Missouri and Kansas whichever you prefer, it can sometimes make you see things that aren’t really there. Summer in football terms is time to get better and see what you have but you should never get too excited about what you see.
This summer I have seen 7-on-7, team camps, all-star game and practices and lineman challenges. Each different event has shown me something. It’s always great to see these summer events but it leaves me wanting the regular season to arrive sooner.
There have been some impressive teams along the way. Park Hill South, Shawnee Mission East and Shawnee Mission West have all done well at 7-on-7 tournaments. Those teams have passing as a major component of their offense so the work this summer could mean all three could be very good offensive football teams this year.
I’ve also seen top lineman like Olathe South’s Braden Smith, Lee’s Summit West’s Jamone Boyd and Blue Valley West’s Davis Clark compete and show why all three of their teams will be relying heavily on each of them this fall.
While all of this summer activity is great you have to be careful not to get too caught up in the results. All of these summer camps, passing leagues and tournaments and competitions are good ways for teams and players to get ready for the season but they don’t always translate into victories in the fall.
That hot gunslinger QB might look great tossing the ball to the fast receiver but when the pads are put on both might be barely able to stand upright for an entire game. Nothing against non-contact 7-on-7 but football is a physical game and you see a lot of passes and completions in a 7-on-7 game that would never be made in a real game.
Same thing with lineman competition where big guys show how agile, fast and strong they are but sometimes they can’t block or tackle come game time.
Even the team camps where squads strap on the pads and go close to full speed can also be a mirage. Some teams always look great because they run a system that is unique and teams have a hard time preparing for them. At the same time others may look lost as new players are finding their ways in new positions.
It all means that summer football is part of the process. It’s an important and interesting part of how teams get ready for the season.
I love summer football but it’s good to take everything in perspective. Take summer football for what it’s worth. It’s time for everyone to get better, learn and get excited about the upcoming season.
Dion Clisso is the Managing Editor of PrepsKC. To reach him send email to