Morris provides leadership to Vikings
WILLOW WOOD, Ohio — Chad Morris made it difficult for his teammates to look tough for Symmes Valley High School’s football media day Monday.
The team comedian, Morris cracked jokes and kept the session lighthearted.
When the Vikings take to the field for practice or games, however, the 6-foot, 200-pound senior center turns serious.
“We only have six guys old enough to drive,” Morris said of Symmes Valley’s 31-player roster.
“We four seniors have to step up and lead, make sure nobody is slacking and that we’re all giving all we’ve got on every play.”
The Vikings lost nine seniors from last year’s 6-4 team.
Morris, quarterback/cornerback Keifer Wilson, fullback/cornerback James Newcomb and running back/defensive back Trent Turner are the seniors this season. Morris is the veteran of a young offensive line that features one junior, two sophomores and one freshman.
Vikings coach Rusty Webb said Morris has made the most of his talent and displays a strong work ethic.
“Chad is not a natural athlete,” Webb said. “He has worked himself into becoming an athlete. He is very hard working and shows great senior leadership. I’m very proud of him.”
Morris moved to the Symmes Valley district from Rock Hill in third grade and has become a key part of the football program.
Blocking and tackling isn’t the senior’s life, however, as he said he enjoys hunting,
fishing and working with animals in 4H.
A strong student, Morris intends to major in civil engineering in college.
Symmes Valley narrowly missed the postseason in 2017. Morris said he and his teammates expect to remedy that this year.
“We want to make the playoffs,” Morris said. “Our focus, though, is on the next game.”
Symmes Valley’s next contest is a scrimmage with Southeastern. The Vikings then play a jamboree game with South Point before turning their attention to the season opener Aug. 24 at home against South Gallia.
Off the field, Morris said he’ll try to lighten the mood when necessary.
“Somebody has to,” he said, with a laugh.