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Leander Glenn High in 2018 joined the exclusive club of schools that have secured a playoff berth in their inaugural season of varsity football.

Senior running back Julian Morris was an integral part of an up-and-coming Grizzlies team with a Class 5A Division II area finish under their belt, performing exceptionally as one-third of an eye-catching backfield trio.

“We are a team that, offensively, tries to be multiple and balanced in terms of pass and run, and [also understands] that the pass becomes more valuable and more explosive when you establish the run first,” second-year head coach and campus athletic coordinator Rob Schoenfeld told Texas Scorecard. “[Julian] was certainly not the only one out there running the football, but he was a very important part of getting that run established.”

Schoenfeld described Morris as someone “who gets downhill in a hurry” and a “good zone runner” who can “make the one cut and get vertical.” As a junior, he pounded the turf for 913 yards and nine touchdowns on 130 carries.

“He certainly fits what we do, especially on the inside zone runs, very well,” the coach said. Once he gets a full head of steam, he’s a difficult target to bring down.”

With his last season in the navy, white, and bright orange under way, the 5-foot-11, 220-pound Morris, whose physical style made him the Grizzlies’ leading rusher and an all-district first teamer in 2018, is keen on helping the young program build on its first playoff appearance. Schoenfeld said that the second-year starter “will probably get more carries this year.”

“More or less, it’s the natural order of things for a returning rusher who’s a good player and your senior leader to carry the load,” Schoenfeld said. “We don’t have a master plan where we say he has to carry it many times more this year for us to be successful. We do what we need to do within the framework of our offense to have the best chance for success.”

Glenn dropped its season opener to Liberty Hill High, 41-13. Despite the loss to the Class 4A Division I runners-up, Schoenfeld and the Grizzlies have their sights set on the next game ahead.

“Our expectations for everybody is to improve by every day, every week,” the coach said. “It’s a cliché but it has a great deal of validity. We take it one week, one game at a time. I couldn’t care less of what the landscape looks like for Week 3 or Week 10 right now … We’ve got to focus on ourselves.”

Glenn High’s next game is against Austin McNeil.