Imagine yourself getting ready for your junior year of high school, knowing that your college will be paid for and you will get to play football in the Big Ten for your favorite team. That was the case for Solon junior James Morris this past fall.
Playing for the Spartans, Morris has been a part of two consecutive state championship teams. Not only that, he has pretty much been the focal point of the offense in each season. This season, he finished 11th in the state in rushing with 2,011 yards (9.4 yards per carry) with 30 rushing touchdowns. He tallied over 40 scores this year, as he also found paydirt through the air, on special teams and on defense. Seemingly anyway you can score six points, Morris has been there and done that the past two seasons.
To say he is an important part of what Solon has done might be an understatement. However, the very humble teenager takes it all in stride.
"I just want to help my team win." Morris says. "We have a lot of great players on our team. You cannot win the game by yourself. It takes a complete team effort to do it."
He is also quick to point out that his head coach, Kevin Miller, has played a very significant role in the player he has become.
"Coach Miller is probably the key reason why I have been successful." James states boldly. "I never really get to talk about how good of a coach he is, or how great of a guy he is. I can attribute all of my success to him."
Most recruits will at least take their visits and then make a decision. Or, they know where they want to go but still take a visit or two to solidify their choice. Morris thinks about the process, but is happy that he has decided early.
"It's definitely cool to take a visit." He proclaims. "I envy those guys and those things. But at the same time a lot of guys envy what I have. That is just part of the deal."
For right now, he is a 215 pound wrestler and a pretty good one at that. An undefeated record and recent Spartan Invitational championship to his credit has Morris thinking he might be on to something.
"I want to continue to get better each match." He said. "I am more of a finesse type wrestler, but you hate to categorize yourself as one thing. I like the sport because it keeps me in shape."
However, Iowa Head football coach Kirk Ferentz has no worries about a budding two-sport star on his hands once he reaches
"No, I don't think I have much of a future in wrestling." Morris laughs. "I enjoy being successful about it. As intense and driven as those guys are (
He does think the Spartans have a shot as a three-peat champion in football next fall.
"Boy I hope so." James says. "We have a lot of guys coming back. We will have to replace our quarterback and safety. But the possibility is there. Coach Miller and the rest of the staff will push us, no doubt about it."