Memorial coaches, players look forward to new challenges after playoff loss
Published 12:22 am Tuesday, November 16, 2021
As the clock hit all zeros Friday night at Memorial Stadium, the reality set in for the Titans. Several players were visibly emotional and took a moment to sit on their home turf one final time.
The Titans finished their season 8-3 with a 24-21 loss to Fort Bend Hightower in the Bi-District round of the playoffs.
Memorial Head Coach Brian Morgan said he talked to several players individually after the loss.
“As much as it hurts for them to play their last high school football game, there is quite a few of them that are going to play football past this,” he said. “There football time here is over, but their football is not over if they do not want it to be. I told them the best thing they can do is get their degree and go be a great father and a great husband. That is the most important thing.”
Morgan said he is most proud of the way the players have matured over the past four years.
The team earned back-to-back district titles but fell in the first round for the fourth consecutive year. Memorial quarterback Jah’mar Sanders went down in the second half with a knee injury and did not return.
Sanders is one of nearly a dozen players who will sign letters of intent to play college football.
The quarterback announced on social media he committed to play football the University of New Mexico.
“First off, I would like to thank God for blessing me and keeping me under his wings throughout this process,” Sanders wrote in a post. “And I want to thank the whole PA Memorial coaching staff for building me up as a young man throughout my high school career. I also want to thank all of the colleges that reached out to me and recognizing my talent on the field. With that being said, I am committing to the University of New Mexico. #GoLobos.”
Sanders said his knee is much better and added he can do everything except run full speed. He said he will remember his teammates from his time at Memorial.
“I will miss the feeling of winning as a team and true family through all of the ups and downs,” he said. “Those guys are my brothers. The bond that we have and the energy that was given was amazing to be around. Those guys mean a lot to me.”
Morgan said the senior class made an impact on the program for years to come.
“They have been overall winners,” he said. “You win 17 out of 21 games, that is positive. They have created that consistency of winning. They do the right thing. Hopefully they leave here, especially me having kids now, knowing it is more important they understand they need to be great men. These seniors have done everything we have asked of them. They have played their butts off and worked their butt off. We are very fortunate.”