View From the Press Box: Dion Clisso 3/11

Dion Clisso

By Dion Clisso PrepsKC Managing Editor
Posted: March 14, 2016 - 8:54 AM

Sunday night the Greater Kansas City Football Coaches Association held its annual scholar banquet. It was another great event with and 22 well deserving football players were recognized for winning the $1,000 scholarships.

The event was held at The McCarthy Auto Group’s Olathe Chevrolet store and it was headlined by the players honored and the key note speaker Danny Israel of the Chiefs Radio Network. Israel spoke candidly of his ongoing battle with cancer and his words were inspirational.

Even with a poignant talk by Israel the evening’s top highlight was the first-ever 12th Man Scholarship awarded to Joe Schuchardt from Blue Valley. Schuchardt is a special needs student who has been a part of the football program all four years of high school.

His coach Eric Driskell got up and spoke about his impact on the team and his message was inspiring. One piece that stuck out to me was what Driskell said to the coach right after the Tigers had come up short in this past year’s Kansas Class 6A title game. Driskell said Schuchardt told him to not get his head down because he was a good man and father and that was what is really important.

As adults it’s easy to get wrapped up in what you do for a living and how that defines you. At the same time it is far from the most important character trait. Schuchardt has that figured out at a very early age.

His plan after high school is to go to college and eventually work with underprivileged children is St. Louis. If he continues on that path and makes that profession his life’s work that will help define him. At the same time what he has done so far for those around him at Blue Valley High School already defines him for the rest of his life.

Congratulations to Joe and the rest of the scholar athletes you have earned the right to be honored.