Rhode Island player of the year to visit BYU

Coach Poppinga recently traveled more than 2,000 miles to go to Rhode Island and check in on La Salle Academy's Josh Morris. The Rhode Island player of the year plans on returning the favor by visiting BYU in June.

BYU is looking for speed and they believe they've found back east in Rhode Island. After playing multiple positions on offense and defense, Josh Morris was named his state's player of the year as a junior. Now, he's taking his speed and athleticism to the track.

"I'm just running track right now and it's going well," Morris said. "I've got my first meet tomorrow. I'm probably top two or three in the state in the 100 meters without a doubt. I'm looking to go to the nationals in the 100. Last year my fastest time in the 100 meters was a 10.9. I should be faster this year."

After some early offers, more attention is rapidly coming his way.

"I still have offers from Bryant University, Brown University and Valparaiso University in Indiana," Morris said. "I'm getting a lot of interest from BYU. [Boston College] is really interested and so is UConn and Temple. West Virginia just started talking to me yesterday. I've been hearing from Purdue as well, so that's where I'm at right now and I'll be camping at some other places as well."

BYU outside linebacker coach Kelly Poppinga just stopped by to see Morris in person.

"BYU was at my school yesterday to watch me work out with my team," said Morris. "They really want me to come up on June 13th for their Elite Junior Day. That could be a day where I impress the coaches and get an offer from them, but, you know, nothing is guaranteed. I just know they've been very impressed with me so far. I really like BYU so I'll be down there."

Morris had great things to say about Coach Poppinga.

"He's a great guy and I talked to him several days. He's just a great guy and really genuine. He knows the game and loves the game and is a coach that I would want to play for. I'm sure they have all great coaches there because I know him and he's a great guy. It was an awesome visit with Coach Poppinga yesterday."

Now that Coach Poppinga has flown out to Rhode Island, the Cougar coach would like Morris to reciprocate the interest.

"Yeah, I mean, [Poppinga] pretty much said, ‘For us to fly out from Utah means we're really interested in you,'" Morris said. "He told me to meet him halfway as far as interest goes. He wants me to fly out to Utah. That probably means if I show them the interest that they're showing me, that's a chance for me to get an offer from them. Coach Mendenhall wants to meet the kids first before he offers them, so I'm going to be down there June 13th to meet the coaches."

Morris can play a wide range of positions both offensively and defensively.

"[BYU's coaches] really think I'm a good athlete and can play cornerback really well," said Morris. "With the ball in my hands I'm another weapon against defenses, so they're just really impressed with me as far as my football abilities goes. I think they like me at cornerback and kick returner. They also talked to me about playing slot receiver also. They could be going at it in the war room.

"They compared me to Jordan Johnson, who's on the team now. Coach Poppinga said my film might be better than his, but Jordan is a little bit taller. I'm around 5'9" and a half or 5'10" and Jordan is around 5'10"and a half or 5'11"."

With his interest in BYU being high, Morris has taken the opportunity to learn more about the school.

"Yeah, I looked more into BYU and I talked to Coach Poppinga about BYU's honor code," said Morris. "I looked into the school more and about Mormons and missions and everything. I pretty much looked into all that and really think it's something good, you know? I think what the school expects of you would benefit you as far as football and academics, so I don't think it's a bad thing at all.

"They're definitely big on character and they talked with my coach to learn more about me. I think they even spoke to one of my teachers at school as well. Being a good person and doing things right off the field is definitely something they put a lot of emphasis into."

When Morris visits BYU, there are a few things he will be specifically looking at.

"I'm going to definitely look at the people there, you know, and see if I fit in well with them," Morris said. "I want to take a look at the players that are already there, you know, my future teammates and see what they would be like. I want to talk to them about football and how school is. I want to see the campus and see if I would like living there for four years."

In the meantime, Morris is simply looking forward to his visit.

"Yeah, I'm excited to get out there and check things out," he said.

Total Blue Sports Top Stories