31 Flavors of Football: Morrow a Different Kind of Receiver

To help you and me get through the drudgery of August, I will present in this space a daily scoop of MSU football-ness, as inspired by a certain ice cream chain. August has 31 days, so I’ll let you work it out from there. Here is today’s flavor.

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My, but there has been an awful lot of talk about Joe Morrow the past few months. He’s a redshirt freshman who’s yet to play a down of college football, but the hype has been building. Fans, media, teammates – all have sung the praises of Morrow, a 6-foot-4, 205-pound receiver.

Why all the attention? Because he’s tall, and more than that, he has the desired frame and athleticism and speed to be a major downfield threat. He was a SuperPrep All-American his senior year at Ocean Springs, a four-star prospect who caught 44 passes for 618 yards (14.1 ypc) and five touchdowns that year. As a junior he had 40 catches for 770 yards (19.3 ypc) and 11 TDs.

Morrow is unlike any receivers MSU has recently had. Sure, they’ve had some big receivers the last few years (like Brandon McRae), but none with the skill set Morrow possesses, and none that have produced great numbers. You have to go back a ways to find an MSU receiver of Morrow’s caliber.

Justin Jenkins (2000-03) was very good, but smaller at 6-1. Eric Moulds (1993-95), perhaps the greatest receiver in school history, was 6-2 and weighed more than 200 pounds. So yeah, unless I’m missing someone – and please tell me if I am – that’s it as far as recent history goes.

Of course, Morrow has not actually done anything on the field yet, which we ought to keep in mind. He could wind up being a dud, who knows. And while most of us are hyping him up, his coaches have been more reserved when talking about Morrow.

Offensive coordinator Les Koenning said earlier this month, “The thing about Joe, he’s been really, really good or really, really bad. He needs to get that consistency. That’s all he needs to do. Sometimes he’s not exactly in the right spot, but then when he is in the right spot, he makes really good catches and makes plays.”

The kid is going to have his struggles this year, no doubt. But I’d be surprised if Morrow didn’t come up with some really big plays and eventually turned into a top-notch SEC receiver. Fans are understandably excited at this prospect, because it’s not something they’ve really seen before.