Saturday, April 07, 2007

Who will win this year's Meyer Morton Award?

Each year the Meyer Morton Award is presented to the football player who shows the greatest development and most promise as a result of the annual spring practice. The Award was established by the 'M' Club of Chicago in 1925. Morton, a 1912 Michigan graduate, was a lawyer in Chicago from 1915-48 and served as a Big Ten football official for 23 years. In fact, Morton was the referee in the famous 0-0 tie between Notre Dame and Army played at Yankee Stadium in 1946. A member of the Chicago 'M' Club, Morton traveled to Ann Arbor to present the award for many years, and the award was named in his honor after his death in 1948.

Last year's recipient of the Meyer Morton Award was Steve Breaston. Past winners have included: Jim Harbaugh (1984), Jamie Morris (1987), Desmond Howard (1991), and Braylon Edwards (2004). With one week of 2007 Spring Practice remaining, the leading contenders for this year's Meyer Morton Award appear to be: CB Carlos Brown, WR Greg Mathews, TE Andre Criswell, and OL Justin Boren. Following is a quick rundown of each player's spring practice progress:
  • CB Carlos Brown (#23): Brown, like his number-sake Jim Betts (the 1970 Meyer Morton Award winner), switched from offense to the defensive secondary. After the first week of Spring Practice, Coach Carr stated regarding Brown's move to cornerback that, "athletically, will be a great move for us. He's got a lot to learn, but he can run and Carlos has a great attitude and desire to be good. He has a passion for the game and anytime you have the kind of mentality that he has, I think, good things are going to be in store for him." In 1970, Betts made the position switch and won the Meyer Morton Award on his way to having an outstanding season in the defensive secondary. Hopefully, history can repeat itself in 2007 for the Wolverine donning jersey #23.
  • WR Greg Mathews (#13): Mathews had a good freshman season and looks like he may be a major contributor in 2007. Coach Carr stated that Mathews, "...is a guy when you look at where he was physically compared to where he was when he came out last summer. I mean he's a guy who can really run and he's a big, strong guy that has the potential to be a great receiver."
  • TE Andre Criswell (#39): Criswell moved from the fullback spot to Tight End to fill a need on the Wolverines roster created by Massey's injury and Butler's departure. Criswell has been working hard and could see significant playing time.
  • C Justin Boren (#65): Boren is trying to earn the starting center position this season and Coach Carr has singled him out for praise as a lineman who has performed impressively during Spring Practice.

You will be able to see all the players in action next Saturday, April 14, 2007 at 12:30 p.m., as Spring Practice draws to a close with the Spring "Game" which is open to the public. Come out and decide for yourself who should be the 2007 Meyer Morton Award winner. Go Blue!

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