Morgan's stock on the rise

Canton, Ohio's Joe Morgan is a name that wasn't near a radar screen last spring or summer but a strong senior season has bolstered Morgan into position to be one of the most sought after prospects in the Midwest as we head into the home stretch in the recruiting season.

Joe Morgan, the No. 13 wide receiver prospect in the Midwest, according to, will be visiting Illinois (Dec. 9) next weekend. The Fighting Illini have offered Morgan a scholarship and hope to add him to their already stellar list of wide receiver commitments.

Morgan, a 6-foot-2, 175-pounder, from McKinley High in Canton, Ohio was a late bloomer, 2005 was his first year of starting on the varsity for the Bulldogs.

"First and foremost I'm a track guy," Morgan said.

"Last year when running track, I knew that I was one of the fastest guys in Ohio and from that point forward I knew that I could be a D-I football player. I ran the relays on our track team and I also placed in the state meet in the long jump.

"I ended up having a real good year; I think I had 1,018 yards receiving and 13 touchdowns. I also averaged about 26 yards per catch." caught up with McKinley coach Brian Cross to get his take on Morgan.

"Joe (Morgan) is a guy who really came out this year and did extremely well," Cross said.

"Joe was a lot thinner during his junior year and he worked hard on the weights during the summer and he took off from there. One thing that really stands out is the way Joe runs. He's a track sprinter, long jumper and he's explosive.

"As a wide receiver, Joe is a guy who can be a stretch receiver. He has 4.4 speed, great hands and he's physical. Illinois has offered him a scholarship. Ohio State and Wisconsin are talking about a visit."

Morgan said there are some schools on his short list.

"I'm looking at Illinois and I'm going to visit there next weekend," Morgan said. "Toledo and Bowling Green have offered. Besides Illinois, I think my other favorites would be Ohio State, Michigan, Michigan State, Louisville, Tennessee and Wisconsin.

"I don't have a favorite right now but Illinois has offered me a scholarship and they are my only visit right now so we'll see what happens from here."

Morgan will be a full qualifier scoring 21 on his ACT and carrying a 3.6 grade-point average in the classroom.

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