by Bruce Strand, Sports editor
Watching Trevor Morlock play basketball for Rogers last year, one might have wondered if this agile, 6-foot-4, 200-pound, broad-shouldered fellow played football, too. Well, he didn’t then, but this fall Morlock donned shoulder pads for the first time since eighth grade, and wound up playing in the Prep Bowl.
The football experience rubs off on basketball, too. “I was always pretty physical,” says Morlock, “but probably a little more since playing football.”
Morlock, an inside-outside threat on the court, led the Royals last year with 14.1 points and 9.1 rebounds per game, and dished out 2.6 assists per game, making the all-Mississippi 8 team in his first year on varsity.
A rough customer under the hoop who routinely out-boards much taller players, he’s up to 9.8 rebounds per game this year. His passing is sharper, too, with 4.6 assists per game. As for scoring, after a 20-point game in an opening 65-61 win over Tech, he’s had trouble with his shot and is averaging 10.8 points on a 10-4 team with good scoring balance.
Coach Joe Belka says Morlock is working his way out of the slump and was 3-for-5 on three’s in a win over Cambridge-Isanti last week.
There’s been no rebounding slump, though.
“Trevor is a very good rebounder. I think it is a combination of strength, positioning, and determination,” said Belka. “His work ethic is second to none and it really shows on the boards.”
Morlock’s tactic: “I just go for the ball.”
Belka regards Morlock as one of his most coachable and hard-working players ever, a true gym rat.
“He’s willing to do whatever it takes to help the team win and practices as hard as he plays,” said Belka. “He has shown great leadership as well. He is a very good student and a pleasure to be around.”
Morlock is a weight-room regular and a lot of his iron-pumping buddies are football players who naturally tried to persuade him to get back on the gridiron. This year Morlock agreed . “I wanted to play football again my senior year. I knew tge teamn would be pretty good, too.”
Coach Marc Franz put Morlock at tight end and outside linebacker.
“It was great to have him be a part of the football team,” said Franz. “He is a strong, athletic kid. He gave us one more good tight end we could rotate with Devin Waters and Nick Wentzel. Together, the three of them really made our multiple TE formations go.”
In the Monticello game, Morlock played both outside linebacker and tight end due to a couple of teammates being dinged up and the team was able to keep rolling along.
Morlock caught six passes for 109 yards and two touchdowns, and made 20 tackles (two for losses) and a fumble recovery. More importantly he got to play in a state tournament and two games at the Metrodome.
The straight-A student lists his other career sports highlights as suiting up for Rogers in their state basketball appearance as a sophomore, and helping the Royals post their first-ever win over Elk River last Dec. 28 (58-56). His goal this year is, of course, another state tournament, and beyond that, college basketball.
The Morlock scorecard
Personal file – Family: parents Bob and Nita; sister Tiffany, 22 …. Age: 18 … Sports: football, basketball … Other activities: National Honor Society, mentoring, Fellowship of Christian Athletes … Academics: 3.9 GPA …. College: undecided where; basketball, business major
Favorite stuff – Class: Team Sports in P.E. …. TV show: xxxxxxx …. Reading: Slam magazine … Drink: chocolate milk … Food: Chinese … Athlete: LeBron James … Kickback activities: video games … Place he’d like to visit: Australia