Quarterback Morris trains for chance at professional football career

Senior quarterback Shane Morris poses for a portrait on Sept.13 at Kelly Shorts Stadium.

Since he was young, Shane Morris dreamed of playing in the National Football League.

Out of De La Salle Collegiate High School in Warren, Morris committed to the University of Michigan as a four-star quarterback.

Following three seasons at Michigan, Morris earned his bachelor's degree and transferred to Central Michigan University to use his final year of eligibility. 

“Central Michigan was an awesome experience for me to get a different look on college coming from Michigan,” Morris said. “It was an awesome experience to be with the guys in the summer, meeting new guys, making new friends, and building relationships with players, coaches, strength staff and people around the university.”

Now, the 6-foot-3, 225-pound pro-style quarterback is dropping everything to take his shot at playing professionally.

“I started my master’s program (at CMU) in project management, but I don’t plan to finish it until I need to move up in my career,” Morris said. “I’m just done with school and training here (Miami) before heading back for Pro Day. Then, I’ll be working out in Mount Pleasant until the NFL Draft.”

Morris was on scholarship for the Fall 2017 semester, in which he was a graduate student, Assistant Athletic Director for Communications and Marketing Jim Knight said. 

Morris packed his bags and moved to Miami in late December to train for 2018 Pro Day, which takes place in Mount Pleasant during March. He is working out with famous trainer Pete Bommarito of Bommarito Performance Systems.

“They train everybody down here,” Morris said. “Rob Gronkowski and Antonio Brown come down here, Le’Veon Bell too. A lot of NFL guys come down here to train. He does the NFL Draft prep as well.”

As a trainer, Bommarito helped prepare Eli Manning for the 2004 NFL Draft, in which the quarterback was selected No. 1 overall. Morris, knowing he needs to hone his craft for Pro Day, has stuck to a rigorous schedule in hopes of making it to the NFL.

“I get going at 6:30 a.m. for workouts, treatment, more workouts, and then I’ll throw,” Morris said. “It’s 6:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. pretty much every day. It starts at 6:30, so I’m up at like 5:50 a.m.”

Since his time in Miami, Morris has already bonded with old friends. He worked out with a few former Michigan players, including Denver Broncos tight end Jake Butt.

“Those are my best friends,” Morris said. “I roomed with them in college (at Michigan). We keep in touch and they were happy for me and said they watched every game. They’re just happy I got an opportunity to play and have the opportunity to continue playing as well.”

Morris is only asking NFL scouts for one chance.

“I want to get into camp,” Morris said. “Once I get to camp, I know I’ll do fine. I’m just looking for a shot. I’ve been working hard for it and these next two months are going to be really difficult. I’m excited for the opportunities to get in an NFL camp and show what I can do.”

During the 2017 season for CMU, Morris completed 249-of-446 passes for 3,237 yards, 27 touchdowns and 17 interceptions.

“I love the opportunity I was given from (head coach John) Bonamego and (offensive coordinator Chris) Ostrowsky,” Morris said. “I thought the season went really well. We got eight wins, did some great things, and got better as the season went on.

“I had so much fun this year, just playing again. I haven’t been a starter since high school, so to be the guy week in and week out for a group of guys was awesome for me. I couldn’t have asked for anything more.”

Morris said he has heard from NFL scouts around the league and believes he will end up in training camp with one of the 32 teams in the league. Right now, the Canadian Football League and Arena Football League are not an option for Morris. 

“Hopefully an opportunity presents itself to be picked up in free agency or the draft if I am lucky enough,” Morris said. “I’m really excited for this next opportunity and I’m going to make the most out of it.”