J.D. Morgan is a 6-foot-2, 195-pound pocket passer who seldom runs the ball. In his career at Butler he has completed 188 of 368 passes for 2,765 yards and 20 touchdowns with 15 interceptions (none so far this season). In his junior year he threw for 1,666 yards and 15 scores with eight interceptions as the Bears (11-3) reached the Class 6-A playoff semifinals before losing to eventual champion Trinity 49-6.
The Courier-Journal: What do the initials J.D. stand for?
Morgan: Jacob David. It was my mom who started calling me J.D. Both of my parents wanted a J.D. in the family. I have a unique name, and I like it.
Where did you start your football career?
In the Valley Youth League. I believe I was 7. We live behind Valley High School. Soccer was the first sport I played. I also played football and basketball there. I didn’t get serious about football until I got into high school.
What’s been your best game for Butler?
It was against Manual when I was a junior. It probably was my worst (start); I threw two interceptions in the first quarter and both were returned for touchdowns. After that I threw for over 300 yards and five touchdowns, but we lost 40-35.
Your biggest thrill in football?
Other than us reaching the playoff semifinals last year, it was the game against Pleasure Ridge Park my sophomore year. We were behind (41-34) with 1.8 seconds left. Brenton Caldwell returned the kickoff 80 yards as time expired. (Butler had five or six laterals during the kickoff return, with Caldwell taking the last lateral around the 50-yard line and breaking into the open. That made the score 41-40. Morgan ran for the two-point conversion, and Butler had its unforgettable victory).
What is your favorite class in school?
I’m taking advanced calculus and English, along with oral communications. I’m getting high school and college credits for the English class. The class I like best is business law. You learn more about the real world, and it prepares you for the future.
What will you major in at college?
Either physical therapy or something to do with nutrition. I went to Bellarmine University as a Governor’s Scholar. I took a psychology class, and in general studies I looked into nutrition. That has always interested me.
Do you want to play football in college?
I’d like to play Division I, but I’ll wait until the season is over. I’ve heard from some smaller colleges, such as Centre College, which I like. No serious offers yet.
With all your extracurricular activities, how do you spend your free time?
I don’t have much time after doing my homework. I watch football and “SportsCenter” on TV. Michigan is my favorite college team — my dad went there as a freshman. I don’t watch the NFL that much, but I do like Tim Tebow and Peyton Manning.
J.D. MORGAN UP CLOSE
* School: Butler.
* Year: Senior.
* Sport: Football.
* Student/athlete: J. D. has a 4.0 GPA, with straight A’s through 11 years of school. He is an advisory board member of the National Honor Society, president of the Beta Club, senior class president, a leader in the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and active in Good Shepherd Lutheran Church. He has scored 33 and 34 on the ACT and was a Governor’s Scholar this summer. He has been Butler’s starting quarterback since his sophomore season.
* Family: J. D. lives with his parents, Cheri and Dion, and sister, McKenzie, a freshman at Butler.
* Coach Scott Carmony: “He’s everything you’d want out of not only a football player, but a young man. He is unbelievably smart and coachable. Throw that on top of his talent as a football player. He’s never missed a game or a practice. … He’s confident and a natural-born leader.”
— Bob White