Twin brothers Taji Morris and Bilal Morris took an unofficial visit to Rutgers last week, I gave them a call to see how it went.
How was the trip to Rutgers?
"It was great. I hung out with Schiano for a while. I didn't think that the head coach would spend that much time with us but he did. I think it definitely moved Rutgers up into the forefront. I have offers from Rutgers, Boston College and Lehigh but Rutgers is now first on my list."
What was it specifically that put Rutgers into the forefront?
"Coach Schiano convinced me that if I went there I could help to turn the program around. It would feel good if I could go to a program and help to turn it around. I was also impressed by the attention paid to myself and my brother. During their first freshman practice there was a break and Coach Schiano spent that time with myself and my brother. That really convinced me that Rutgers was really interested in us."
Is it crucial that you go to the same school as your brother, Bilal?
"It is pretty crucial that my brother and I get go to the same school. It is not the whole world but it would help my decision."
Was there anything else about Rutgers that impressed you?
"I like the campus. I didn't know that New Brunswick had places to go to. Friends had told me that there was nothing there but it is not true. We went to the town and I liked it.
It is close by and I don't see myself going across the country to play. It is away from home but my parents come and see me play."
What position are you being projected at?
What would you consider to be the most important thing that you would bring to a college football program?
"I'll play anywhere they put me. They are recruiting me as a running back but if they put me on defense, I'll play there. I bring a lot of energy, even to practice. I like the game, everyone says that. I have fun that people get off on that energy."
When will you make a decision?
"They wanted me to verbal right then but I want to think things over. I won't make a decision before the season starts."
Bilal noted that they took a tour and sat down with a couple of coaches. They did not offer Bilal as of yet though, as noted above, Taji has an offer outstanding. The brothers took a tour of the academic buildings and of New Brunswick and they liked it. There was some discussion of Bilal getting a scholarship but it was not tendered as of that visit. Apparently the staff wants Bilal to put on a little weight and he is going to be working on that this fall.
There is a chance that Bilal might come and walk on as football player. "It is a pretty good possibility. If I had to choose I would like to play football and it is close to home, my friends and family could see me play." Both Taji and Bilal talked to Coach Schiano and Coordinator Ferraro and got introduced to a lot of the assistants." It was a very relaxed atmosphere and the conversations shed a lot of light on Rutgers and what Schiano is trying to do for the program. Schiano wants to put Rutgers on the map for football. This is an area that is very strong for football and Schiano wants Rutgers to be noted both for its exceptional academics and it's athletics", Bilal stated. As to the coming high school season, he added," I am really looking forward to next season. We lost our QB but we still look strong. A new QB is coming in, our fullback is coming back and my brother and I bring a lot of speed. There is a lot of speed on the team as a whole. We won the prep championship last year and we are looking to repeat."
Taji Morris is a 5-10, 180, 4.45 running back who had 1355 rushing yards (over 9 yards per carry) and 18 rushing touchdowns together with 2 touchdowns receiving. He also had 8 catches for 190 yards. Taji was recently picked by Sprint magazine (a football publication) as a pre season All American at running back. His brother Bilal Morris is 5-7, 140 with a blistering 4.3 in the forty. He plays WR and CB. Bilal had 14 catches and averaged almost 16 yards per catch. He had three interceptions on defense and averaged 31 yards per punt return. Bilal runs a 10.6 100. He was state champ in the long jump and state champ in the 100 meter and the 200 meter in New Jersey Prep A State Championships. Bilal was also All State in football as a defensive back. A friend of Rutgers recruit, Orlando Kane, Bilal has competed with Orlando on the track circuit.
Mike Fasano: MikeFasano@comcast.net