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Wauwatosa West's Morgan could do it all during senior campaign

He was a star on offense, defense and special teams

Mickey Morgan of Wauwatosa West eludes diving New Berlin Eisenhower linebacker Steve Harrell on a play in the first quarter of the Trojans’ drubbing of the visiting Lions in September.

Mickey Morgan of Wauwatosa West eludes diving New Berlin Eisenhower linebacker Steve Harrell on a play in the first quarter of the Trojans’ drubbing of the visiting Lions in September. Photo By Dave Haberkorn

Nov. 27, 2012

There is an old cliché that could very well describe Wauwatosa West senior football player Mickey Morgan: He does everything but sell popcorn.

Morgan, however, would probably do that if he was asked to.

So it's no wonder Morgan was named to the all-purpose position on this season's NOW Newspapers All-Suburban team. He was the only Wauwatosa athlete to earn first-team honors and his selection was only the second time a Trojan made the team (defensive back Reggie Cole was the first in 2010).

"I was so happy for Mickey," said coach Matt Good, the NOW All-Suburban Coach of the Year, giving Tosa West some impressive credentials. "His hard work and dedication paid off. It was a great honor for him."

Morgan played running back, defensive back, he was the punter and place-kicker, kick and punt returner, but he gave up the latter duties as the season went on.

From his defensive back's position, he had 22 total tackles, eight assists and two interceptions, one of which he returned for a score.

A three-year starter, he was a team captain and carries a 3.99 GPA.

Morgan and his senior class were the main reason the Trojans had a 7-1 record in the tough new Woodland-West Division, finishing second behind Pewaukee. They also made the playoffs for the first time in several years, before falling in the first round.

"We had 16 seniors leading the way in the weight room," Morgan said. "That kind of carried into the season. Jon (Doolen) on defense, Adam (Polivka) on the O-line were all part of it."

Plenty of praise

Good said Morgan led by example.

"Mickey is a gifted athlete, but he works hard," Good said. "He puts in hours in the weight room, at open gym, preparing for the season. During the summer he worked out every day. Kids see it and they had no choice but to follow.

"He's a quiet kid, but that's OK. He's like 'follow me and I'll show you how to do it.' He doesn't alienate people. They like him and follow him.

"That's what makes him special, sets him apart. He understands and does what a lot of talented kids in his situation don't do and they are not as successful.

"He always wants to learn. He played running back, wide receiver, kicker, punter, returner. He would play line for us if we asked him. He can do so many things."

Explosive player

Morgan was worth the price of admission. He rushed for an amazing 10.7 yards every time he touched the ball, rushing for 683 yards and had 12 offensive touchdowns. He also scored on an interception.

Included in those scores were runs of 20, 28, 53, 59, 62 and 74 yards as he used his speed to run away from defenders.

"We were a big-play team," Morgan said. "With me, Jamo (Jameson Brock) and Greg (Lewis), we all had the ability to make the big run. The O-line also had a lot of pride in themselves."

Morgan's 191 career points is believed to be a school record, although there is nothing official to confirm it.

When asked what he thought was the turning point of the season, Morgan pointed to the fourth game of the year - the 55-30 win over Pius XI.

"We didn't expect 7-1, but we wanted to make a playoff run, do better than we had before," Morgan said. "We beat Pius XI and at that point we were 4-0. We knew they were a good team. They kept scoring, (but) we came back and scored.

"Normally, when we give up points we don't win. But we ran all over them."

Morgan brought intangibles

When asked what he would miss the most about Morgan, Good had to think a second.

"That's a great question, where do you start? I think the intangible things he does behind the scenes. His work ethic, the talking with the kids.

"He spends hours in the locker room. Whether with the players or managers, he spends time with them.

"People like that make great leaders."

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