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HS Football

HS Football: A Q&A with Cedar Cliff's Jontae Morris

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Cedar Cliff 9

Cedar Cliff's Jontae Morris, right, carries the ball for a short gain of yards before being brought down by Cocalico's Joshua Myer during the second quarter of their game Sept. 2 at Cedar Cliff High School.

It’s not easy to tackle Cedar Cliff’s Jontae Morris.

The Colts’ senior running back, who’s burst back onto the scene this fall after suffering a torn ACL minutes into his junior season, continues to take the Mid-Penn Keystone Division, if not the entire conference, by storm.

HS Football: Cedar Cliff 2021 season preview

With Morris as the cornerstone to the Cedar Cliff offense, the Colts have sped to a 5-2 start, only falling to Central Dauphin East (5-2) and Bishop McDevitt (5-1). Morris accounts for 136 of the team’s total 222 rushes. The oodles of carries have translated to points on the scoreboard, too, with Cedar Cliff assembling 207 points across its seven contests.

Individually, Morris has dashed for 933 yards on the ground, averaged 6.9 yards per carry and found the end zone on 13 occasions. In the receiving department, he’s chipped in three catches for 6 yards. At cornerback, on defense, he’s compiled 14 tackles (nine solo).

Football will forever be a part of Morris but diving for the pylon and cruising past defenders is just glimpse of who he is.

Morris took some time to answer some questions for The Sentinel.

Question: Cedar Cliff is off to a 5-2 start, what has been some of the keys to the team’s success?

Answer: When COVID hit last year, we didn't really have a team camp or a lot of offseason training with each other. So, I’d say this offseason helped us a lot and scrimmaging and having a team camp this year.

Q: Last season you tore your ACL, what was the process back to full health like for you?

A: When I tore my ACL, it was heartbreaking at first, but, you know, then getting the messages from the city, my teammates and my family, it was a lot of support, so I knew they had me. So, there was a lot of rehab, too, with physical therapy, stuff like that, and a lot of offseason training to get my leg right. And also my teammates had my back a lot, mentally and physically.

Q: In what ways have you used last season’s injury as motivation this fall?

A: I just usually have this hungry mentality. You know, I didn’t have a season last year with getting injured in my first game, and then with having a season [this year], I’m just hungry. Of course, it’s my last year, too, so I’m going to do whatever I need to do.  

Q: Do you have any game day/pre-game routines or traditions?

A: Honestly, I don’t really have one, but I usually go with maybe a motivational speech or even watch my brother’s highlights.

Q: What’s your favorite memory of your high school football career so far?

A: My favorite memory was probably my sophomore year, going into my first varsity start against Bishop McDevitt.

Q: If you could have a walk out song onto the field, what song would it be and why?

A: Man, that’s hard, but I think I’d have to go with my all-time [favorite] “Dreams and Nightmares” by Meek Mill because there’s a lot hypeness to it, and I just know the entire song, so you can’t miss me on one of the bars. I’ll never miss.

Q: If you could meet one professional athlete, dead or alive, who would it be and why?

A: I’d probably say Jalen Ramsey because of his aggressiveness on the field, and, honestly, his physicality and mentality is nice.

Q: If you ever get the opportunity to sign a contract with a sports apparel company, which one would you choose and why?

A: I’d probably say the Jordan [brand]. I love North Carolina’s baby blue jerseys, and they’re sponsored by Jordan, so I think that’s what I’d go with.

Q: What’s one fun or unique fact about you off the football field that many people probably don’t know about?

A: Honestly, I’m a quiet and humble person. A lot of people don’t know that about me, but I just don’t really talk to anybody. I’m just kind of in my own world.

Christian Eby is a sports reporter for The Sentinel and cumberlink.com. You can contact him at ceby@cumberlink.com and follow him on Twitter at: @eby_sports

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