BOND OF BROTHERS: Auburn’s Garrett Morris finds strength and success through teammates – Opelika Auburn News

Posted: July 30, 2017 at 11:30 am


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For a running back that had nearly 1,700 rushing yards as a junior, Garrett Morris remains as humble as a young man seemingly can be as he deflects praise for his accomplishments on the field. Instead, he decidedly points towards the bond of his teammates and coaches for his success.

The rising senior garnered Class 7A All-State first team honors for his accomplishments last year, though he views his accolades as a result of the opportunities that his team provided for him.

Last year when I was playing running back, I was able to show my stuff because of the offensive line and everyone else on the field, said Morris, one of the Opelika-Auburn News' Super 8 Seniors. They really opened up holes and then they gave me the opportunity to show my speed when I had to or run over someone but they didnt miss blocks and I didnt really have to do that.

Personally, I dont feel like I was doing anything more than each and every one next to me. I see everyone the same on our team, I think it takes all 11 of us to be out there and win every game that we did.

While Morris breakout year as a junior put him on the map, head coach Adam Winegarden saw the talent and his desire early on a year before.

When he was a sophomore, we recognized early that this kid had winning characteristics, Winegarden said. Hes a battler; hes a competitor in everything we do. Its hard to be a follower before we become a leader, but he had all the characteristics of the winning makeup.

We knew that early in that year we had to start investing time in to get him ready to play because at some point that year we knew he was going to need to play for us. We got to the second half of the year and he was the big spark our team needed.

Morris was thrust into an early contributing role as a sophomore as the team was hit with several injuries, and despite the early call-up, he thrived as a player and built a relationship with his leaders that has inspired him as leader as he enters his final year.

Tyus Flakes was the running back here and just to be on the same field as that guy, it was awful that he got hurt early in spring practice, but he was a mentor to me, Morris said. When I was a sophomore and the seniors up there Bradley Northcutt up there at quarterback and everyone they really showed me how to be a leader and how to lead the people younger than me.

As Morris gained a greater knowledge of how to lead, it only served to bring the qualities that were already instilled within him based on the foundation that he was given from his family, friends, coaches and teammates.

His success on the field can be attributed to the support of those around him, but Winegarden also recognizes that Morris accomplishments have come from a tremendous expectation of himself.

Hes got a great family thats poured a lot into him, hes been given a great foundation by his family, Winegarden said. Your best players are self-motivated, and your best players are ones that have a high sense of excellence, not only in the sport that they play but in every aspect of their life. With that, he has a lot of great life balance. He gets what this is all about, he gets what his purpose is, he expects the very best out of himself in everything he does.

Morris has pushed himself, and while he prefers to point to his teammates for coming together and finding success as team, he has racked up numerous accolades and set the bar high for his senior year.

He rushed for 1,643 yards and 16 touchdowns and added 324 receiving yards with four touchdowns as he finished the 2016 season as a Class 7A finalist for back of the year. With such personal success, and a team that finished in the second round of the state playoffs, the expectations for team also remain high.

We are shooting for nothing less than a state championship, Morris said. But I feel like with football it comes with so many that you learn just by becoming a leader, becoming a friend, learning all of the life values that the coaches teach you. Thats really what people take away from the game, because you dont get to play football your whole life, but you will live out these characteristics that the coaches teach you and that you practice every day out on the football field.

While Morris looks to the life lessons that can be taken away from football, its no wonder to see the schools that have voiced their interest in him and offered scholarships. Morris holds four scholarship offers from West Point, the Naval Academy, Richmond and Furman.

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BOND OF BROTHERS: Auburn's Garrett Morris finds strength and success through teammates - Opelika Auburn News

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Written by simmons |

July 30th, 2017 at 11:30 am

Posted in Personal Success