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      2012 KHQA Football Player of the Year: DERREK SCHONE, Concord Triopia


      2012 KHQA Football Player of the Year

      DERREK SCHONE, Concord Triopia DB/RB

      Rationale: The Concord Triopia All Stater won the Fan Vote for this award on line, but truth be told, he didn't even need that added 20% in the process to secure this honor. He very early in this process, Schone emerged as the consensus leader among the members of the KHQA Sports Team; which is pretty impressive given the quality of the field of finalists. Was he the flashiest pick or the biggest name in the mix? No. But on balance, when you look at overall impact on a football team, Schone's accomplishment both tangible and intangible, were such across the board that he emerged as the kid whose contributions were the most impossible to ignore. To wit: I am not going to argue that Schone was the area's very best running back, but he was a top five choice there in our final rankings and I am not sure that anyone would argue he was among the area's elite backs or Top Ten Offensive Weapons. Subjectively, I also had Schone ranked as the number two overall Defensive Back in Tri State Football at season's end and the seventh best overall Defensive Player anywhere in our region. Top that of with this: we had Derrek as the number one overall Special Teams Weapon (thanks to his ridiculous ability in the return game where he averaged nearly 40 yards and attempt and added three touchdowns) in Tri State Football. On balance than, Derrek Schone was the only prospect in Tri State Football that we had ranked in the Top Ten individually in every phase of the game. That that said contributions helped power his team to the Class 1A Final Four underscores just how much relative value he tangibly brought to the table for Concord Triopia this season. What it doesn't measure is this: the size of the kid's heart and his quiet leadership to a young team that really needed a tone setter. As we've already documented, Derrek lost his step mother Pam Schone to cancer in August and played this season with an incredibly heavy heart. Someone close to the Triopia program relayed the story to me about Derrek's refusal to come off the field during the second half of his team's only regular season loss at Camp Point. Schone had essentially blown up a shoulder in that game and could barely lift his arm up to receive a hand-off. But his team was losing and Derrek had vowed to do everything in his power to make this season a memorial to Pam. He wanted to make a masterpiece in her honor, I am told, and could not bare the idea of not being out on the field, even in pain, to try and get the Trojans a comeback victory. My source on that story told me it was one of the most inspired/inspiring things they've ever seen on a football field...and it came from a 18 year old. Well, Derrek Schone may not have gotten a perfect season or a state championship, but his heart and his relentless effort and the high standard of excellence he set on every single play for Concord Triopia is as fighting a tribute to Pam as any human being could possibly have hewn. No one in Tri State Football left more of themselves on the field in the pursuit of excellence and I think it's fair to say this award signifies what a truly mature and incredible young man Derrek Schone has become within the annals of a great high school football tradition. Just and unbelievably inspiring and esteem-worthy kid. And his inclusion here on this award honors us far more than we could ever honor him.


      Runner-Up: Brett Taylor, Macomb


      Past Winners:

      2011: Chris Jackson, Macomb

      2010: Ser Whitaker, Illini West

      2009: Michael Lafferty, Illini West

      2008: Javis Vineyard, Clark County

      2007: James Vandenberg, Keokuk

      2006: Andrew Bergeson, Hannibal

      2005: Tony Hall, South Shelby

      2004: Trevor Frericks, Quincy Notre Dame

      2003: Cliff Bumgarner, Concord Triopia

      2002: Cody Grotts, Carthage

      2001: Jensen Jones, West Prairie/LaHarpe

      2000: Wyatt Green, Carthage

      1999: Matt Paris, Monroe City