Lee’s Summit quarterback Drew Lock walked into the Blue Springs High School gym last December and sat down on a folding chair. For nearly an hour, he watched a handful of players walk to the podium to accept various Thomas A. Simone awards.
His name was never called. Instead, Blue Springs tailback Dalvin Warmack won the Simone Memorial Award for the second straight season — an honor reserved for the top football player in the Kansas City area.
Lock called the situation a motivating factor for his senior season.
And a year later, his name was finally called.
Lock was recognized Tuesday as the 32nd recipient of the Simone Memorial Award during a ceremony at Lee’s Summit High School. Lock, who has committed to Missouri, threw for 2,717 yards and 28 touchdowns in 10 games this season.
Rockhurst senior T.J. Green, Bishop Miege senior Ryan Willis and Fort Osage junior Skylar Thompson were also finalists for the award.
“Knowing that (Warmack) got to do it twice now makes me a little jealous,” Lock said. “I wish I could come back and do this again. I’m glad I got to see it happen.”
Lock, a drop-back quarterback, became the first Lee’s Summit player to win the honor since 1985, when Craig Phillips took home the award. Phillips delivered the keynote speech Tuesday.
Lock’s family attempted to trick him into thinking they were driving to Bishop Miege to honor Willis, the only finalist from Kansas. And Lock said he initially fell for the ploy.
Lee’s Summit finished only 4-6 this fall, and he thought the sub-.500 season would cost him the award.
“We had a rough year at 4-6,” Lock said. “But going into college, I don’t think I’d want an easy road to where I just breezed by everything. I want the toughest. That got me more ... ready for the next level.”
While Lock took home the day’s top honor, the annual ceremony also recognized other award-winners Tuesday.
Oak Grove senior Aaron Graham won the Frank Fontana Award as the top small-class player. Graham rushed for 2,934 yards and 41 touchdowns this season while helping Oak Grove to its first Missouri Class 3 state championship. In the state-title win against John Burroughs, Graham broke a Class 3 championship-game record with 266 rushing yards.
Blue Springs senior Carlos Davis took home the Buck Buchanan Award, presented to the best big-class lineman or linebacker. Davis had 33 tackles for loss during his senior season, along with 18 sacks.
Piper senior Colton Beebe repeated as the Bobby Bell Award recipient for the best small-class lineman or linebacker. He had 152 tackles, including 23 for loss, along with four sacks. He also spent time at fullback and punter.
Blue Springs wide receiver Terrance Sanders won the Otis Taylor Award, given to the top tight end or wideout in the metro. Sanders totaled 1,088 yards and 12 touchdowns in 48 catches.
Oak Grove’s Pat Richard and Bishop Miege’s Jon Holmes won coach of the year awards. Olathe East senior James McGinnis won the fourth annual Nathan Stiles Inspiration Award. The Gordon Docking Media Award was presented to Mick Shaffer. Lincoln Prep swept the Interscholastic League player of the year honors, with Jabari Hobson taking the offensive award and Joshua Van Dunk winning the defensive award.