The headline: One of the original Shorter Hawks’ football players, Zach Morrison, returns to The Hill to serve as the team’s third head football coach. Morrison has been an assistant football coach at several high schools — including Coosa — as well as wrestling coach. He replaces Aaron Kelton, who was winless in two years with the Hawks. Kelton also was serving as interim athletics director. Phil Jones was Shorter’s coach for 11 seasons, including the start-up years.
From a media release: Zach Morrison, an offensive lineman on the Shorter Hawks‘ inaugural football team who played four years for the Hawks, has been named head coach of Shorter University’s football program. He will begin his duties immediately.
Morrison comes to Shorter from Kennesaw Mountain High School, where he has served as head coach of the school’s wrestling team and assistant football coach since June 2016. He is the co-founder of Fellowship of Christian Athletes at Kennesaw Mountain. He also taught AP US History and co-directed the school’s international studies program. He previously taught and coached at Statesboro High School, East Jackson High School in Commerce, and at Rome’s Coosa High School.
“Zach was an offensive lineman and center when I was Offensive Coordinator at Shorter,” said Shorter University Athletic Director Tony Lundy. “He was one of the best offensive linemen we ever had. Football is in his blood; his dad was the right guard on the 1980 University of Georgia National Championship Team, and we were blessed to be able to recruit Zach to come to Shorter as a player.”
A member of Shorter’s inaugural football team in 2005, Morrison started every game during his four years with the Hawks. During that time, he was a three-time All-Mid-South Conference and Academic All-Mid-South selection. As a senior in 2008, he was named a College Fanz second team All-American and an NAIA Scholar-Athlete.
He was a key member of Shorter’s first-ever conference championship squad, helping the Hawks to the Mid-South Conference title in 2008. Since graduation, he has been an active member of the Gridiron Club and was instrumental in creating the Shorter Football Letterman Club, which annually presents a scholarship to a student athlete who represents everything a Shorter Hawk should academically and athletically. In 2013, Morrison became the first football student athlete inducted into the Shorter University Athletic Hall of Fame.
“It is really good to come back home. I’m still pinching myself. I’m excited and so blessed to have been given this opportunity,” said Morrison.” My family and close friends are all excited for me. I love Shorter and have always wanted to support the school. It’s also important to me to keep Coach Jones’ memory and tradition alive. He’s the reason I am teaching and coaching. He taught us all so much, and I want to follow his example of recruiting good athletes who are solid people.”
Morrison graduated from Shorter in 2008 with a Bachelor of Science degree, having majored in political science, government and history. While at Shorter, he studied abroad in Russia and England and was a member of the History Club. He was selected as Shorter’s Student Athlete of the Year in 2008.