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Mr. Lamar M. Morgan
Western Carolina Univ.
|Assistant Football Coach / Cornerbacks
Morgan to Play in All-Star Bowl Game
Football 12/19/2007 Courtesy RaginCajuns.com
Former Louisiana's Ragin' Cajuns safety Lamar Morgan has accepted an invitation to play in the 2nd annual Texas vs. the Nation all-star bowl.
The game, which pits top collegiate seniors from Texas against top seniors from around the nation, will be held at Sun Bowl Stadium in El Paso, Texas on Saturday, February 2, 2008.
Former Alabama and Texas A&M head football coach Gene Stallings will lead Team Texas in the collegiate all-star bowl.
Morgan, a native of Copperas Cove, Texas, earned his degree in Business Administration/ Management in December. He was a nominee for the 2007 NCAA National Leadership Conference and a semifinalist for the 2007 Draddy Trophy. One of college football's most sought after and competitive awards, the Draddy Trophy recognizes an individual as the absolute best in the country for his combined academic success, football performance and exemplary community leadership.
Morgan has either been on the Sun Belt Conference Honor Roll or Commissioner's list every year since he began his collegiate career. He was named a team captain during his senior season.
Stallings will go head-to-head with former Philadelphia Eagles and Chicago Bears coach Buddy Ryan in his second year as head coach for Team Nation. Last year, Ryan led Team Nation to a 24-20 victory over Team Texas and looks to defend the Nation's title this year.
Stallings got his start in football playing under legendary coach Paul "Bear" Bryant at Texas A&M University. He later became head coach at Alabama winning a national championship for the Crimson Tide in 1992. His coaching career also included 18 years in professional football and eight years as head coach for Texas A&M.
�I very proud of Lamar," UL head coach Rickey Bustle said. �He's a good student who has done well academically and excelled on the football field.
�Lamar is a hard worker on and off the field and in the classroom. He's been a terrific team leader."
Morgan appeared in 40 games for Louisiana, posting 154 tackles, four tackles-for-loss, one sack, nine pass break-ups, two forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries and four interceptions.
Eight Cajuns have now accepted a post-season bowl invitation under head coach Rickey Bustle.
Former Cajuns/current NFL'ers C.C. Brown (Houston Texans), Charles Tillman (Chicago Bears) and Ivan Taylor (Pittsburgh Steelers) all played in the Hula Bowl and each was taken in the NFL draft.
Bill Sampy (Philadelphia Eagles) played in the Inaugural Grid Iron Classic and Las Vegas All-American Classic. After catching a 41-yard touchdown pass in the '05 Gridiron Classic, Sampy signed as a free agent with Philadelphia immediately following the 2006 NFL Draft.
Jerry Babb and Brandon Cox accepted bids to play in the second annual Magnolia Grid Iron Classic and current Arizona Cardinals cornerback Michael Adams played in the Inta Juice North-South All-Star Classic last season.
The 2008 Texas vs. the Nation game will kick-off at 4pm CT and will be nationally televised on CSTV network.
Tickets went on sale December 1, 2007 at Ticketmaster locations. For more information contact Rave Marketing & Events (915) 544-9000.
Posted December 19, 2007
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Morgan primed to hit field
August 17, 2005 -
The time is now for Lamar Morgan.
The 6-foot-2, 215-pound sophomore safety from Copperas Cove, Texas missed the 2004 season for Louisiana's Ragin' Cajuns while recovering from knee surgery, but he's ready to make up for lost time in 2005.
"I'm good to go," Morgan said. "I wanted to play last year, but it was better to redshirt. Now I just have to get my confidence up and work on my speed."
That speed hovers in the 4.4-second range for the 40-yard dash, so there aren't any apparent lingering effects of the surgery. Certainly UL's coaches are eager to see Morgan on the field this fall.
"Lamar Morgan is a rising star in the program," Defensive Coordinator Brent Pry said. "He has the size and the tools of an NFL prospect. He's also a bright kid, a 3.5 student."
A Sun Belt Conference honor roll student in his first two years of college, Morgan was able to go to school on the performances of Cajun safeties C.C. Brown and Antwain Spann in 2004.
Brown was drafted by the NFL's Houston Texans after a senior season that saw him make a team-high 101 tackles, while Spann had 68 stops and four interceptions en route to earning a contract with the New York Giants.
"The safeties are very important to this scheme," Pry said. "C.C. was tops on our team in tackles and in the top five in the league as a down safety. His position is vital to our run defense. And Antwain made one big play after another last year on the deep ball from the middle safety position.
"Those are some big shoes to fill."
Morgan steps into the role Brown held the last two seasons, with veteran Johnny Felders also available in that run-stopping spot, while ex-cornerback Terryl Fenton moves to the "Spann" safety spot.
"Terryl was a playmaker at cornerback for us, so we want to see if he can do that in the middle," Pry said. "He's picking it up quite well."
"This scheme is good for the safeties," said Morgan, "but one person can't make the whole defense. A lot of players can make plays for us. Our cornerbacks are all stepping up. They're making a lot of plays, breaking on the ball. They all will play.
"We'll have a lot of new players stepping in. We've gotten a lot faster this year. I think we're going to max out with our speed on the field. Everybody's pushing everybody. If we continue to focus as a team, everything else will go fine."
Returning to active duty and picking up from his 15-tackle freshman season of 2003 is special for Morgan, but he does realize 2004 had its benefits.
"I got to watch C.C. and Antwain last year and learn from them," Morgan said. "They did all the little things right. I'm still working with (assistant) coach (Tim) Rebowe, and while I was redshirting I worked hard in the weight room and ran hard."
Following Brown is enough of a challenge, but Morgan has another role model to emulate in fellow Copperas Cove product Charles "Peanut" Tillman.
Tillman preceded Morgan to UL and was a No. 2 draft pick of the Chicago Bears in 2003. He not only starred for the Cajuns at safety and showed the way to the NFL, but also showed how to bounce back from injury to return to the field in 2004.
"When I'm home and working out, I see him," Morgan said. "There are two or three NFL guys in Copperas Cove who work out there, and he (Tillman) does a football camp.
"I didn't play football until my freshman year of high school. I got to learn a lot from him. I can't compare myself to him. I ask him questions and he knows what to do. He told me a lot of good things when I was rehabbing, because he had gone through the same thing."
Morgan is one of several Texans on the UL roster, including fellow Copperas Cove product Josh Harrison, and it's natural to figure they're all pointing toward the Sept. 3 season opener at Rose Bowl champion Texas. But it goes deeper than that for Morgan.
"There are some players I played against in high school who play for Texas, including from the same district," Morgan said. "I'm looking forward to that. But after getting hurt I'm just excited about getting to play again."
Originally published August 17, 2005
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