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Monday, February 24, 2020
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Metro Sports Report

Morrissey brings high expectations to Prairie

 Mike Morrissey and his wife, Jessica, are expecting their second child this fall, just in time for his first season as the new football coach at Cedar Rapids Prairie.

There will be great expectations at Prairie as well.

Morrissey is only 28, but he's already coached at three different colleges and led Thornridge High School of Dolton, Ill., to the state playoffs last season in his first year as head coach.

Prairie announced Morrissey as its new coach Wednesday afternoon. He succeeds Craig Jelinek, who retired after the 2010 campaign with a 106-96 record in 20 years.

"I'm extremely excited," Morrissey told the Metro Sports Report. "It's a big step for my family. We're definitely ready to get started."

Morrissey comes from a football family. His father, Ed Morrissey, was a Hall of Fame coach at Pleasant Valley High School and is currently an assistant coach at St. Ambrose University.

"I was going to Pleasant Valley games probably from the time I could walk," he said. "I was a ballboy there from the time I was in fifth grade all through eighth grade."

Morrissey played for his father at Pleasant Valley and was a starting quarterback.

"His impact on my life has been tremendous," said Morrissey. "I learned a lot about myself though my experiences as a high school football player, being able to be around their coaching staff and the great people that have been at Pleasant Valley as well.

"To this day, he's still the best coach I know. I've been very blessed to have him as a resource and somebody I can rely on for help."

Read more...
 
Marcus Paige

Paige named All-Metro Athlete of the Year

Linn-Mar junior Marcus Paige has been named the Athlete of the Year on the All-Metro boys basketball team and his coach, Chris Robertson, has been named the Coach of the Year.

Metro coaches placed seven players on the first team, including four unanimous picks with Paige, Jarrod Uthoff (Jefferson), Josh Oglesby (Washington) and Wes Washpun (Washington). The other first-team selections were Matt Bohannon (Linn-Mar), Jake Manning (Kennedy) and Kasey Semler (Marion).

Uthoff has been honored this month as Mr. Basketball and the Gatorade Player of the Year, the two most prestigious awards in the state, but Metro coaches felt Paige deserved to be the Metro Athlete of the Year for basketball.

Linn-Mar went 26-0 this season, sweeping the Mississippi Valley Conference title and capturing the Class 4A state title.

The All-Metro second team included Josh Montague (Linn-Mar), Shane Benton (Linn-Mar), Kyle Lamaak (Kennedy), Taylor Olson (Jefferson), Christian French (Kennedy), Matt MacDougall (Prairie) and Kevin Hosch (Xavier).

Honorable Mention

Ian McBrayer (LM), Michael Thul (LM), Tyler Meiborg (CRJ), Alec Saunders (CRJ), Jake Misener (CRK), Joe Coleman (CRK), Sean Bredl (CRW), Cybryan Moa (CRW), Jacob Aune (CRP), Matt Jantzen (CRP), Mitch McLaughlin (CRX), Nolan Dunkirk (CRX), Dusty Albaugh (Marion).

 

 

Uthoff Gatorade Player of the Year

Jarrod Uthoff added to his glittering collection of postseason awards Thursday when he was named the Gatorade Iowa Boys Basketball Player of the Year.

Uthoff was named Iowa Mr. Basketball on Tuesday and previously was named the Mississippi Valley Conference Player of the year.

Uthoff, a 6-foot-8 senior at Cedar Rapids Jefferson, led the state in scoring this season with 576 points. He averaged 26.2 points, 11.1 rebounds and 3.2 blocked shots and set the career scoring mark at Jefferson with 1,306 points.

The Gatorade award also recognizes high standards of acacemic achievement and exemplary character, according to the company. Uthoff has a 4.16 GPA, is a member of the National Honor Society and has volunteered with Special Olympics.

Recent Gatorade Players of the Year in Iowa include Harrison Barnes of Ames (2009 and 2010) and Matt Gatens of Iowa City High (2008).

Uthoff is a finalist for the Gatorade National Boys Basketball Player of the Year award. He has signed with the University of Wisconsin.

   

What will future hold for Metro hoop stars?

The end of the high school basketball season substantiated what we thought all along, that this was a vintage year in Metro prep basketball for boys and girls.

You have the Players of the Year in Jarrod Uthoff and Kiah Stokes, along with the Class 4A state champions with the Linn-Mar Lions, which is proof positive how good it really was. But maybe of even more interest will be to be follow these champions into their collegiate careers.

What will the likes of Uthoff, Paige, Bohannon and Oglesby look like in four years? Let's put it in horseracing jargon for those four: Will the last horse to enter the derby, ala Marcus Paige (only a junior), be the first in the NCAA winner's circle in four seasons?

The rundown might look like this: Out of Gate No.1 would be Matt Bohannon, the reason being he fits the track that he's going to at the University of Northern Iowa.

Out of Gate No.2 would be Josh Oglesby, because there are more openings on the track at Iowa.

Out of Gate 3 would be Jarrod Uthoff, because of all the questions to be answered: How much weight is he going to put on? Is he going to grow to be a 7-footer? And how will he fit in Badger red?

And on the outside lane out of Gate 4 will Paige, who will be heading to North Carolina after next season. At this time of year, three or four years from now, will he get the roses that go to the NCAA champion?

Read more...
 

Six Metro players named all state

An astounding six Metro boys basketball players have been named to the Iowa Newspaper Association's first team all-state teams for the 2010-11 season.

Metro athletes dominated the Class 4A squad, earning five of the eight berths. Leading the way was Jefferson senior Jarrod Uthoff, who also was selected by the INA as the 2011 Iowa Mr. Basketball. Uthoff led the state in scoring at a 26.2 clip and averaged more than 11 rebounds per game.

Also named to the Class 4A first team were senior Matt Bohannon and junior Marcus Paige from state champion Linn-Mar, and Washington seniors Josh Oglesby and Wes Washpun.

Marion senior Kasey Semler was a Class 3A first teamer.

Bohannon was the Most Valuable Player at the state tournament when he averaged nearly 25 points per game and, along with Paige, guided the Lions to an undefeated season.  He and Paige both cranked up the offense when post players Josh Montague and Ian McBrayer went down with injuries in February. The pair combined for 60 points in a win over Jefferson, and 48 of the Lions' 56 in their state championship game win against Des Moines Hoover.

Paige led Linn-Mar in scoring with a 17.7 average that included 51 percent shooting from 3-point range. He committed in January to play college basketball at North Carolina, although he still has one season at Linn-Mar remaining.

Bohannon, who has signed to play at Northern Iowa next season, averaged 16.2 points.

Oglesby is a 6-6 guard who has signed with the Iowa Hawkeyes. He averaged 21.2 points for the Warriors and knocked down 87 3-pointers. Washpun, a flashy point guard with springs for legs, averaged 18 points. Both were responsible for the Warriors making back-to-back runs to the state tournament.

Joining the Metro quintet on the 4A first team are junior Adam Woodbury from Sioux City East, junior Kale Abrahamson from West Des Moines Valley and senior Matt Tiby from Urbandale. Abrahamson's father, Kent, played prep basketball at Cedar Rapids Washington.

Semler was the leading scorer in Class 3A, averaging 21.2 points. He drove the Indians to their second state tournament appearance in three years.

 

 

   

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