Philadelphia High School Basketball
Speedy Morris Wins 300 at Another High School

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  Coach William "Speedy" Morris and his happy Hawks after win No. 300 at St. Joseph's Prep. (Pic provided by Bill Avington)

Speedy Morris

Speedy Morris' first-team
All-Catholic players:

1969: Mike Bantom
1970: Jim O'Brien
1971: John Beecroft
1973: Chico Singleton, Donald Kelly
1974: John Griffin, Donald Kelly
1975: Zane Major
1976: Mike Morrow
1977: Reggie Jackson
1978: Reggie Jackson
1979: Lonnie McFarlan
1980: Lonnie McFarlan
1981: Randy Monroe, Glenn Welton

ST. JOSEPH'S PREP, 2002-15
2002: Mark Zoller
2003: Mark Zoller, John Griffin
2004: Chris Clark, John Griffin
2005: Reggie Redding
2006: Reggie Redding
2007: Matt Griffin
2008: Jim Mower
2009: Joe Nardi
2010: Joe Nardi
2011: Stephen Vasturia
2012: Stephen Vasturia, Miles Overton
Stephen Vasturia, Miles Overton
2014: Chris Clover
2015: Chris Clover

1969: 14-2, 26-4
1973: 13-3, 24-6
1974: 15-1, 31-3
1978: 13-1, 32-4
1979: 13-1, 31-5
1980: 13-1, 31-3
2003: 13-1, 30-2
2004: 13-1, 27-4

Speedy Morris
Celebration Page

  On Dec. 30, 2015, with a 49-43 win over Salesianum (DE), in a showcase event at Widener University, William "Speedy" Morris became the first high school basketball coach in Pennsylvania history to claim win No. 300 at a second school, according to state hoops historian Bill Gaffey.
  Morris was 347-82 at Roman for 14 seasons (1968-81) and the win over Salesianum made him 300-94 in 15 seasons (2002-16) at SJ Prep.
  Senior Pete Gayhardt led the Hawks with 18 points and 15 rebounds while soph Kyle Thompson contributed 13 points. Other scorers: Darius Kinnel 7, Chris Montie 5, Brian Griffin 3, Temi Aiyegbusi 2, Evan Wall 1.
  The win raised the Prep's season record to 7-3 -- 6-3 in non-league games, plus a CL win over O'Hara.
  This story was written after Speedy won his first game as SJ Prep's coach . . . 

Morris upbeat as new job gets under way
Coaching legend thinks he'll make impact at Prep

By Ted Silary
  ON THE NIGHT when Bill "Speedy" Morris returned to the coaching level where he earned his wings, his jacket never took flight.
  If you were around when Morris coached high school basketball, for 16 of 17 seasons ending in 1984 (14 at Roman Catholic, one year off, two at Penn Charter), you vividly recall the flying jackets.
  Could have been a referee's call. Could have been a bonehead play. Could have been anything even remotely negative, really.
  Speedy's jacket would soar, the fans would roar and later they would exaggerate to friends, "I swear it went 50 feet! "
  Morris, fired last March after posting eight consecutive losing seasons at La Salle University (his 15-year run began with six consecutive postseason appearances), was back on a sideline last night, coaching St. Joseph's Prep past Chestnut Hill Academy, 64-40, in the latter's Tip-Off Tournament.
  The scene did not quite qualify as Bright Lights Territory, but Morris was still energetic.
  Of course, energetic is nowhere close to vintage Speedy.

1968: 17-7
1969: 26-4
1970: 15-9
1971: 17-8
1972: 19-6
1973: 24-6
1974: 31-3
1975: 28-6
1976: 28-5
1977: 24-8
1978: 32-4
1979: 31-5
1980: 31-3
1981: 24-8
2002: 24-6
2003: 30-2
2004: 27-4
2005: 26-5
2006: 24-5
2007: 22-8
2008: 16-11
2009: 14-9
2010: 17-8
2011: 14-9
2012: 21-6
2013: 24-6
2014: 16-7
2015: 18-5
2016: 7-3

High School
1968-81: Roman, 347-82
1983-84: Penn Charter, 41-14
2002-11: SJ Prep, 300-94
1985-86: La Salle women, 43-17
1987-01: La Salle men, 238-203


  In the third quarter, after watching a Hawklet play lazy defense, Morris screeched and used a salty word or two.
  "Think he's not into it?" said his son, Keith, an assistant.
  When guard John Griffin - his father, John, starred for Morris at Roman Catholic and later coached Saint Joseph's University
- declined to snipe despite being wide open, Morris yelled, "Griff! Shoot the damn ball!"
  But all in all, he was calm and calmer.
  "Hey, look at the score," he said, smiling. "Wasn't much reason to yell. Except for the third quarter, when we got outhustled,
and I'm still not happy about it, as I just told the kids again, I thought we gave a good effort.
  "I wasn't throwing the jacket much the past few years. My wife has been dressing me better [he wore a black suit]. A couple
years ago, I threw my jacket and never got it back. I think people were looking to get one."
  A dozen family members watched Morris' return. Also on hand were maybe 35 "Speedies," for lack of a better term - people
 who have supported his teams under all circumstances. Even Temple coach John Chaney, who lives in nearby Mount Airy,
turned out to watch a half.
  A few minutes after the game, Stan Parker, CHA's athletic director, walked into the Hawklets' locker room and presented
Morris the game ball while welcoming him back to scholastic coaching.
  Keith Morris insisted his father is having a fun time.
  "He loves coaching high school kids," he said. "At this level, he can have much more of an impact on their lives. You don't
have to worry about the stupid NCAA regulations. He's making this team a family. He has already had kids to the house for
  "The only reason he went to college coaching in the first place [with La Salle's women for the '85 season] was to help put his
four kids through college. We all thank him greatly for that."
  Speedy said he would have gladly remained at Roman Catholic to this day had he not been fired after the '81 season for
reasons never fully explained.
  "I'd be in my 35th season and feeling like Morgan Wootten," he said, smiling, referring to the been-there-forever boss at
DeMatha, in Hyattsville, Md.
  The strange part about last night's scene, from Prep's end, anyway, was the total lack of student support.
  True, the Hawklets will play tonight for the Catholic Red football championship. True, it was the first game. True, it was on
the road. True, the opponent was not a big-timer.
  But no kids at all?
  "A lot of our students think we're going to be the same, ol' Prep," manager/scorekeeper Dan Timby said. "But in our
scrimmages, we beat Judge and McDevitt handily. We had a 19-0 quarter against McDevitt.
  "He's working us hard. The practices are usually 3 hours. One went for 3 1/2."
  Said Morris: "The guys that can do it in 2 hours must be much smarter than I am. Hey, the only defense we have in so far is
  Morris shrugged when asked whether he thinks his players consider him a coaching legend or someone who merely happens
to be their new coach.
  "I heard that [one player's] response when I got the job was, 'Wow! He's going to coach us?!' " Morris said. "I feel they're
responding to me. Whether that's because I coached for a lot of years in Division I, I don't know. I think they just want
someone they can respond to. Someone who can push them.
  "Kids still want discipline; though a lot of them will walk all over you if you let them. The biggest change through the years
has been that you have to be a lot more positive with kids. You can yell, sure, but then you'd better pat them on the back."
  Though he used words such as "shocked" and "crushed" when referring to his La Salle firing, and said he still misses being
there, Morris appears to be enjoying his new assignment.
  He is still collecting on the last year of his La Salle contract, and he's unemployed except for coaching. Thus, he often arrives
at Prep by 10 a.m. and holds court in an office specially provided for him.
  At Roman, Morris went 347-82 with six Catholic League championships. At Penn Charter, he went 41-14 with one Inter-Ac
  At Prep, he's a gaudy 1-0.
  "I'm enjoying this," Morris said. "And I'm enjoying the kids."
  Pause. Grin.
  "If we lose a couple, I don't know if they'll be enjoying me."
  Look out for flying jackets . . .