Coach Profile: SM North's Dennis Grayless 1/3
By Dion Clisso PrepsKC Managing Editor
When the season began Dennis Grayless was a rookie head coach looking to turn around Shawnee Mission North. At the end of the year Grayless had his first wins, qualified his team for the playoffs and played the defending 6A champions tough for one half.
Grayless took over the Indians this year after serving the last four years as an assistant. He comes in with coaching experience in other sports and as the ROTC coordinator for North. Before he became a teacher he was in the United States Marine Corps for 25 years.
Grayless said there are many similarities between the military, teaching ROTC and coaching football.
“The first thing that you have to get with a group of kids is a selfless belief and a belief of commitment and work ethic,” Grayless said. “If you can get a group of people that don’t worry about themselves but worry about the group first that organization is going to have success. Whether it is a company, an athletic team or a family or whatever that group is going to have success.
“Whenever you are leading people you have to get that philosophy ingrained in them. In ROTC we struggled with that a little but then we went on to have great success.”
Grayless has led the North ROTC program to five national championships and hopes he can bring that attitude to the football team.
“We have to get that mindset with our football kids is that we are all in this together,” Grayless said. “It doesn’t make a difference what our individual statistics are. What are we doing as a group of men? Are we conducting ourselves inside that building and our community? When people have that North football shirt on we want people to say that is a good young man right there.”
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