Senior Malik McMorris ’15 has excelled in the classroom and in the world of athletics at Mater Dei High School as a member of the football, basketball and track teams. For his senior year, Malik is focusing on football and track and was most recently named High School Athlete of the Month for October by Sports Illustrated. Malik was the first athlete in the nation to receive this honor. In addition, Malik has been invited to play in Semper Fi All-American Bowl in January 2015. Even in the wake of his mother’s recent passing in January 2014, Malik has successfully balanced his commitment to academics (carrying a 3.7 GPA), athletics, and his family.
Today was an exciting day for Mater Dei High School with several representatives from various media outlets covering tonight’s big game against Servite High School as well as Malik’s honors from Sports Illustrated and the United States Marines. We asked Malik to take a quick moment to blog about his experience over these last weeks as well as today’s events.
It is really nice to get this level of recognition from people I know and even from those I don’t know. People have been coming up and congratulating me. It is great to know that people are supporting me and want me to keep excelling at what I am doing.
I never expected to receive an honor like this. The day I found out about it was just kind of normal. Coach called me into his office and told me that Sports Illustrated wanted to interview me. He made it seem like it wasn’t a very big deal. Then all of the interviews happened and I started to realize it actually was a big thing. But, I just rolled through it. They constructed a great video interview and article.
This morning I got to be on KTLA, spoke with Sports Illustrated and other members of the press. It was interesting. I just tried to have fun with it. You know, these kinds of things might never happen again for me. So, I am just enjoying the moment.
As for being selected to the Semper Fi All-American team….well, Monarchs of the past like Jonathan Lockett and Thomas Duarte have had that honor. I never thought I would have the chance to go through the same thing. Having the Marines here on campus today during our rally was really awesome. And Matt Leinart ’01 got the students fired up too. I can’t describe how I felt with the whole school cheering and the Marines there with my dad and me.
We’re ready for the game tonight against Servite. We’re going to kick things up a notch. This is a great rivalry and we as a team have been playing against these guys the last four years. We have got to weather this storm and get the big win. I do believe we are the better team and we Monarchs have each other’s backs. Coach Rollinson always reminds us that we are not just playing for ourselves, but also for the players of the past and for brothers and sisters in Mater Dei. I am all for that.
Everyone is so supportive. They have been all of my life – from my parents, teachers, and coaches. Even parents from other teams and other players have been great. Everyone has provided me support and I have been able to grow as a person and an athlete. I am so thankful for these experiences and this special time.
I do not believe it is an accident that these accolades and honors have happened to me in a month that promotes breast cancer awareness. My mom fought that for a long time. It is funny that this has all happened during this time, but it is not an accident. I may not have pink on my uniform tonight, but I have my pink mouth guard, which reminds me of this very important cause and of course my mom.
One of the best lines from today was something I have never heard Coach Rollinson say, “When the sun goes down tonight, the sky will turn RED.”
BEAT SERVITE and GO MONARCHS.
Malik McMorris ‘15