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Allison should be South's AD

It looks like South Gwinnett High School has ruled out the right guy for its vacant athletic and activities director job.

Longtime Comet girls basketball coach Mike Allison interviewed for the position, but was informed recently by principal Clay Hunter that he didn't make the cut. Hunter may announce a quality hire, but in not choosing Allison he jilted the one person who deserves the job more than anyone.

It all comes down to loyalty. Allison has remained loyal to a school he has coached at since 1983, but the favor wasn't returned when he was passed over as AD.

Allison is the dean of Gwinnett basketball coaches with 22 years as head coach of the same program, sporting a great deal of success in that role as a 400-game winner. His 1995 girls basketball team won the state title, one of only five state championships in South's long history.

He also was one of the main coaches for the Comets' 1997 state softball championship team. And he's been involved with South's golf teams for years, so he's familiar with various athletic programs.

He's a great leader, which is why he's outlasted so many basketball coaches in the area. He's also worked under nine different principals and five different athletic directors, developing good working relationships with a variety of personalities.

If he needed any advice on administration, Allison doesn't have to leave his own household.

His wife Laurie, who now works in the Gwinnett County Public Schools office, is an experienced local principal.

Allison even went back to school a few years ago to get his degree in administration, setting him up for the dream job he wanted in Snellville. He hoped to become South's AD, giving him a chance to help the school he loves so much prosper. He dreamed of retiring from South, which is why he never left.

He had offers to coach elsewhere over the years, but turned them down. He even stuck around when his children, including his daughter Mandy, a girls basketball player, went to Grayson with her friends when that school opened.

In short, Allison was loyal. South should have been, too.

Will Hammock can be reached via e-mail at will.hammock@gwinnettdailypost.com. His column appears on Thursdays.