Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - ALL-ACADEMIC TEAMS -

An el­bow in­jury cut short Cole Morgan’s time on the mound this spring. It failed to stop him from hit­ting the books or the base­ball.

“I al­ways made time to study,” said Morgan, who bat­ted .438 for the Stuttgart Rice­birds. “A lot of our prac­tices were late in the af­ter­noon. I just made sure I got all of my study­ing done be­fore prac­tice started.”

Morgan ad­mit­ted he had overused his arm the pre­vi­ous year. He had surgery ear­lier this year and now says his arm “feels great.”

“I had put too much stress on it,” Morgan said. “I learned a lot from that ex­pe­ri­ence.” While it was tough not be­ing able to start on the mound, the in­jury did not keep Morgan off the field. He played short­stop for the Rice­birds, com­pil­ing a .438 bat­ting av­er­age with 1 home run, 6 dou­bles and 25 RBI.

Lim­ited to less than 20 in­nings on the mound this sea­son, Morgan struck out 38 bat­ters while walk­ing only 5. His ERA was 1.32.

De­spite the in­jury, Morgan found Delta State Univer­sity in Cleve­land, Miss., an in­ter­ested party for his tal­ents. The States­men signed the 5-7 pitcher to a na­tional let­ter of in­tent.

“They have a tra­di­tion there and a

coach (Mike Kin­ni­son) who’s been there for more than 20 years,” Morgan said. “It’s got great fa­cil­i­ties and they have a very sta­ble pro­gram. That was some­thing that’s very im­por­tant to me.”

Morgan plans to ma­jor in busi­ness at Delta State. He said he en­joys any­thing re­lated to the fi­nan­cial field.

“A friend of my fam­ily, who is a fi­nan­cial ad­viser, talked to me about it one day and I re­ally like what he did,” Morgan said. “I’m good at math, and I think I would like to help peo­ple make their money grow.”

Morgan also was a good golfer for the Rice­birds. He tied for fourth in the Class 4A state meet, fir­ing a 77 at the Stuttgart Coun­try Club.

“To be hon­est with you, golf messes up your base­ball swing,” Morgan said. “But I like play­ing it, and I still do it.”


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