After Drew Morgan made a ton of plays to help his team, fans turned on him for one mistake.
To really understand the story of Drew Morgan, you have to understand the last few years of Razorback football. Any fan can tell you it’s been a rollercoaster ride but it seems few remember the fall and rise of last season.
Arkansas was plagued with injuries. A lot of people use that term but most of the time do so improperly. To put it in perspective, last year I was writing pieces questioning if Arkansas was actually cursed. From the preseason to what seemed like every week of the regular season, Arkansas lost major key players. All of which, it seemed, were on offense.
In the midst of a program burning, came a wide receiver no one knew who hailed from Greenwood, Arkansas. Before the 2015 season, Drew Morgan wasn’t in the constant rotation. I believe he was a 3rd or 4th string receiver at the beginning of the season. Then, when all seemed to be lost to injuries, the 6 foot 195 pound Morgan stepped up in a huge way.
In a years time, Drew Morgan rose to superstar status in the state of Arkansas. He was called cocky and even referred to himself that way, but he was clutch. Morgan was nicknamed “Drew the Glue” for his ability to make big plays when it counted. His other nickname “Druice” or “The Juice” came after an interview he did talking about the mental drive and leadership he showed on the field and in the locker-room.
One Decision Defines a Legacy
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There have been many an Icarus in the sporting world. Players that have reached incredible heights and had near-miraculous accomplishments, only to fly too close to the sun. Then, in the wake of one decision, forever be labeled according to the outcome of that decision rather than all the ones made before it.
Arkansas, meet your Icarus. Drew Morgan did for this team and this fan base, what few had ever done before. He excited and took on his back an entire state. When everything was on the line he gave this entire fan base a cup of the “Druice”, even before the term had ever come about.
In 2015 Drew Morgan started making a LOT of decisions. He made the decision to step up and lead. He made the conscious effort to rise to the occasion, seize the moment, and elevate an entire state’s mental mindset.
In 2016 Morgan continued to do just this until one fateful decision got him ejected from his last game as a Razorback. In a moment of frustration and passion, Drew Morgan spit in opposing players face during the Belk Bowl. Now before you take to twitter in “rage” and talk about how “appalled” you are, ask yourself a simple question. Have you ever made a mistake? I’ll give you a hint as to the answer. Yes.
If you’re comparing whatever mistake you made to that of Morgans, understand this isn’t about the mistake itself. It’s about how you will be remembered vs how you will remember Morgan. Will it be for your accomplishments or will it be for your failure in that moment?
The Legacy You Choose to See
Believe it or not, we choose to see in a person what it is we see. Sure we base our opinions of a person on what it is they did or how they acted but in the end, it is us who choose how we see that person. This, my friends, is called perception. How we choose to perceive a person not only says something about that person but it also says a lot about ourselves.
After Morgan made that mistake last night, it took only moments for a fan base that he loved and cared more about than anything to unjustly turn on him. I am not here to defend his actions last night because well, there is no defending what it is he did. I am, however, saying that the fans calling into radio shows to say, “Morgan could have been one of the greats until he did that last night”, need to step back for a second and realize one simple thing.
Whether they see him as one of the greats now or not is irrelevant. He solidified himself as one of the greats in 2015 when he began to make his ascent to the heights of being the legendary player we will all see him as, regardless of that last decision he made.
That is how he will be remembered by the mass collective and how I will always view him. Time heals all wounds even when there is none, to begin with. Drew Morgan is already an all-time great and will remain so for many more years. Thanks for the memories, Drew. Woo pig.