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Desert Ridge quarterback Tarek Morrison, center, carries the ball while taking on Westview during a playoff game, Friday, Nov. 9, 2012. Morrison, a junior, suffered a torn ACL for the second time in 12 months and will miss the rest of the 2013 playoffs.
Tarek Morrison, Jr., QB, Desert Ridge
The Jaguars had an open quarterback competition last year and Morrison won the job and ran with it. He finished the season 44-of-84 passing for 861 yards with nine touchdowns and seven interceptions while rushing for 1,404 yards and 18 scores. Desert Ridge advanced to the Division I state semifinals, but Morrison tore his anterior cruciate ligament in a quarterfinal victory over Westview. If fully healthy, Morrison should be able to improve on those numbers and keep the Jaguars in the state championship hunt once again.
Desert Ridge was already one of the elite teams in the state.
Desert Ridge quarterback Tarek Morrison underwent another successful surgery for a torn ACL but will miss the rest of the playoffs.
Taren Morrison, Jr., RB, Desert Ridge
The name is familiar, but moreso because of his twin brother’s numbers from a year ago. Quarterback Tarek Morrison was a fixture on offense for the Jaguars, ending the year with 861 yards passing, 1,404 yards rushing and 27 total touchdowns. Taren Morrison, though, battled injuries all year and finished with only 49 carries for 286 yards and a touchdown. He’s healthy now and ready to join Tarek and Danny Siaumau in Desert Ridge’s explosive offensive attack. Taren can run the ball or be split out wide, but wherever he is, defenses better be paying attention.
Most competitive athlete’s goals are big in either stature or wishful thinking: state championships, scholarships, breaking records, etc.
While Tarek Morrison burst onto the high school football scene as Desert Ridge's star quarterback in 2012, twin brother Taren spent the season in the background.
Lots of teams — especially in Divisions III through V — are going to run the ball no matter what, and the other team knows. Not so many do it in Div. I, and nobody did it better than Morrison and the Jaguars. Without brother and QB Tarek Morrison able to provide a passing game, and then losing top wideout E.J. McClanahan for the season, it was Morrison motoring. It was at least nine defenders within 10 yards of the line of scrimmage on every play, and it couldn’t be stopped. His 2,587 yards rushing and 38 touchdowns led all Arizona running backs, and his 12.38 yards per carry was far and away the best in Div. I.
Desert Ridge workhorse Taren Morrison earns Tribune’s Player of the Year honor
Desert Ridge tailback Taren Morrison stole the show once again for the second ranked Jaguars.
It happens all time; just not after the eligibility clock has already started running.
With two high-powered running-based offenses that each averaged more than 40 points a game this season, it figured that the Division I state quarterfinal between second-seeded Desert Ridge and Avondale Westview would be a defensive battle.
If you didn't know better, you’d think Taren Morrison was trying to run up the score by himself.
Another test passed with flying colors for young Desert Ridge and possibly more questions for Mountain View after only week two.
With his quarterback brother, Tarek, out to start the season, Desert Ridge will depend even more on the run with Taren Morrison ready to carry the load.
Desert Ridge QB Tarek Morrison returned to action for the first time in approximately nine months after tearing knee ligaments. He was back on the field on Sept. 20, 2013.
Desert Ridge's Tarek Morrison runs the ball before being taken down by the Skyline defense, at Skyline, Friday, Sept. 21, 2012 in Mesa. [Tim Hacker/Tribune]
Desert Ridge quarterback Tarek Morrison,center, stand up after being injured on a play in the first half while playing Westview during a playoff game, Friday, Nov. 9, 2012 in Mesa. [Tim Hacker/Tribune]
Desert Ridge quarterback Tarek Morrison,left, runs the ball while Westview's Desmond Washington tracks him down in the first half of a playoff game, Friday, Nov. 9, 2012 in Mesa. [Tim Hacker/Tribune]
Desert Ridge coach Jeremy Hathcock makes a point to Tarek Morrison during their home game against Red Mountain, Friday, Sept. 28, 2012 at Desert Ridge High School. [Brant Clinard/ Special to Tribune]
The Jaguars had an easy time in a 55-0 win over Sandra Day O'Connor. Running back Taren Morrison compiled 135 rushing yards and two touchdowns. Desert Ridge is still without star quarterback Tarek Morrison but the running game is so dominant it doesn't matter. The Jaguars remain at No. 3 in the rankings heading into next week's matchup with Goodyear Millennium.
The Jaguars easily rolled Millennium, 56-0, but the biggest news on Friday was the return of quarterback Tarek Morrison from an ACL injury suffered in last year's playoffs. It was a good test run for him as Desert Ridge faces Brophy next week. The Jaguars remain at No. 3 in the rankings and should reveal more about themselves against the Broncos.
Desert Ridge fell behind national power Gardena (Calif.) Serra by 21 points early in the second quarter on Saturday and it looked like the rout was on. However, the Jaguars battled back and trailed 28-22 with the ball late in the fourth quarter. Desert Ridge couldn't complete the comeback, but sticking close without quarterback Tarek Morrison was impressive. Despite the loss, the Jaguars stay at No. 3 in the rankings.
Desert Ridge played well in a 28-22 season-opening loss to California power Gardena Serra, and didn't let down one bit against Gilbert on Friday night. Running back Taren Morrison was spectacular, carrying the ball six times for 257 yards and five touchdowns. The schedule is not very tough for the next few weeks, so Desert Ridge can coast a bit as it awaits the return of quarterback Tarek Morrison. The Jaguars remain at No. 3 in the rankings.