Having passed the quarter pole and now sitting past the halfway point of the football schedule, the Morris football team knows the task that’s ahead of them. After playing Yorkville on Friday night, the Redskins conclude the season with Rochelle, DeKalb, Kaneland and Sycamore, needing multiple wins in that span to keep its playoff streak alive.
It’s been since the 2000 season since Morris last missed the playoffs and it’s something that this group of Redskins does not want to be remembered for.
In the days leading up to the Yorkville game, Morris senior cornerback/returner Kyle Hill agreed to engage the Morris Daily Herald in a question-and-answer session, and here’s how it went.
Q. How long have you been playing the game of football now?
A. I started playing organized football when I was in seventh grade for the Morris Chiefs and then the Morris Warriors in the eighth grade. I’ve been playing football for as long as I can remember now.
Q. What are your first lasting memories of playing the game?
A. My first lasting memory of playing football is probably my first touchdown, which was a touchdown pass because I was quarterback at the time. It went to Mitch Dite in our second game of the year in seventh grade.
Q. Who was your biggest athletic influence growing up?
A. My biggest athletic influence growing up in the town of Morris, like most young kids at the time, was John Dergo. He was a herolike figure to everyone in our grade at the time and every football player wanted to be just like him. Now that I’m old enough to understand what he was able to do in high school football, I know it was a privilege to be able to watch him play.
Q. Have you played other sports growing up?
A. Other than football, I also play baseball. I’ve been playing baseball ever since I was 5-6 years old. I love playing both sports and really can’t chose a favorite between the two.
Q. What have been the biggest adjustments you’ve had to make over the years as you got closer to being a varsity player?
A. For me, the biggest challenges to adjusting to being a varsity athlete, has been my toughness. As most people know, I’m not the biggest guy out on the field and most of the time I’m the smallest. With this, I’ve learned that I’m going to get smacked around out on the field, but no matter what I need to be out there helping my team get the job done, which is to always to get a ‘W’.
Q. Now on to this team. The 2009 team was the last team to start the year 2-2. How do you guys feel about where you are at heading into the Yorkville game?
A. I feel like this last week of practice has been the best of the year. Everyone’s focus level was where it needs to be and we had the fire out there that we’ve been looking for all season. I think we’ll be able to put it all together this Friday night and go do what we’ve planning to do all week.
Q. With games against teams like DeKalb, Rochelle, Sycamore and Kaneland left on the schedule, what do you guys think it will take to make the playoff now?
A. With the rest of our opponents left on the schedule, we know every game is going to be a tough one. We need to head into every game thinking that it’s a playoff game and that it’s win or go home because in all reality that’s kind of what it is. We know what we need to do the rest of the season to make it to the playoffs and make a serious run, and I think we’ll be able to do. We want to silence all the doubters.