Extra Points: Brian Spano 3/28

Brian Spano

By Brian Spano PrepsKC Senior Writer
Posted: March 28, 2014 - 9:59 AM



It’s great when you have the pleasure of running across a high school football coach as personable as Dave Allie.
 
Sure, he can be intense on the sideline. He can get in a kid’s face when he makes a mistake and just as quickly hug him when he makes good.
 
Allie has coached at my alma mater Raytown South for the past 14 years and turned the Cardinals into more than just a respectable suburban program. He took over for Kelly Donohoe, when he departed for Blue Springs, and has made South a contender, even if it’s had to bounce between both Class 4 and Class 5.
 
No moment had to be more exciting, if not heartbreaking, than the 2008 Class 5 state championship when the Cardinals fell to Hazelwood East 39-34.
 
South was 30 seconds away from claiming its first-ever state title in football, but Hazelwood East’s Tarrell Downing nabbed a 29-yard touchdown pass as time expired to end that dream. The Cardinals finished that season 12-2 and Class 5 state runner up.
 
Another one that will go into the heartbreaker category for me was a three-overtime 9-6 loss against Lee’s Summit West in 2004 in the first round of the Class 4 playoffs. This was the Titans first year of existence, so it was an historic win for their fledgling program.
 
Allie kept Raytown South competitive through the years. Just in the last decade, he’s led the Cardinals to winning records in 2004, 2005, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012.
 
Now, Allie moves east to Grain Valley High School, to a program and a school district that has been growing by leaps and bounds over the last several years.
 
I have no doubt that he will work his Cardinal, now Eagle, magic there, for years to come, making Grain Valley a successful program.
 
But I want to get back to Allie as one of the more personable coaches you’ll ever find. After a game, win or lose, he has never been more gracious to talk to, giving credit to the kids on the field for their hard work. He will give credit to his coaching staff and has always been complimentary to the opposing team and their coaching staff.
 
At times, you might find his daughter at his side during an interview. She wasn’t just the team’s biggest cheerleader, but she was also dad’s biggest cheerleader.
 
Now, the Allies will trade in their red and white for blue and white, shed their Cardinal feathers for Eagle feathers and become part of a whole new Friday night tradition.
 
Congratulations Grain Valley. While you have won yourself a great coach, I know my alma mater will be just fine and move on with a replacement that will continue to carry on the Cardinal tradition.