December 12, 2008
Morris talks about post-season honors
When his high school coach asked him to come into his office to take a phone call, James Morris had no idea what it might be about. When the caller told him that he was being honored as the Gatorade Player of the Year for the state of Iowa, Morris initially thought that it was a joke. But, it was true as the Solon High School junior was named the top player in Iowa for 2008.
"I was really surprised with a lot of talk about how this was such an outstanding senior class filled with great athletes in guys Keenan (Davis) and Brandon (Wegher). When I was told that I was nominated, I really never thought I would have a chance. It was a real shocker when I found out that I won and I am humbled and honored to win," Morris said.
Morris said that in order to be considered he had to fill out a form that asked not only about his football accomplishments, but other extracurricular activities, and any community service type activities he had participated in. In fact, Morris thought that Wegher would have gotten the honor because he had put up outstanding numbers in his senior year.
But, the accomplishments by Morris were nothing to sneeze at as he led Solon to another state championship and an undefeated record.
"I am really happy and it was a very fulfilling feeling to be on top at the end of the year. That is what we had been gunning for all year long and to get it was great."
For the season, Morris rushed for 2,163 yards and 33 touchdowns and averaged 9.3 yards per carry at running back and had 70 tackles on defense.
With a season like that, even though he is committed to Iowa in the Class of 2010, there are plenty of college programs that are now taking a long look at Morris in the recruiting process and requesting film. Morris said that this past week, Stanford Head Coach Jim Harbaugh stopped by after having extended a scholarship offer recently and many other top college programs are taking notice.
"There are a number of colleges that has requested film and I really haven't sent any out except to Stanford and they offered. The schools that have been calling are Florida State, Oregon, Florida, LSU, Alabama, Kansas, and Notre Dame," he said.
Hawkeye fans have nothing to worry about when it comes to his commitment. Morris says he is very solid with his pledge to the Hawkeyes.
Morris is now in the heat of wrestling season for the Spartans and is undefeated at 215 pounds.
"I am off to a 7-0 start and our team is doing pretty well. Our conference is very tough, so it will be very challenging. I am still trying to get into wrestling shape and preparing to win all my matches," Morris said.
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