BOWLING GREEN, Ky. — Before Jihad Morris became a trainer at Quantum Flex, he starred for the Hilltoppers as a cornerback, but now he is back in the one place that gave him a shot to reach his dreams training and developing Bowling Green athletes who strive to be where he's been. 

What You Need To Know

  • Former Hilltopper Jihad Morris is giving back to Bowling Green athletes

  • Morris played at Western Kentucky University from '07-'09

  • His bond with athletes like Jayden Axson are more than just trainer/client

  • Morris started training in January of 2021

“I want them to have an overall understanding of what it means to work hard," said Morris. "But also just to understand that being knowledgeable will help the trajectory of their life and being successful.”

Morris played at Western Kentucky University from '07-'09. He even had short stints in the Canadian and arena football league as well. Hailing from Newburgh, New York, times weren't always easy, dealing with lots of crime and violence, but Bowling Green was the one place that took a shot on him and where his heart resides. 

“During the times I went to play professionally, we still kept Bowling Green as our home base," said Morris. 

Athletes like Jayden Axson want to get to where Morris is and after mutual friends brought them together, the bond has been more than just trainer/client. 

"Jihad is very special to me," said Axson. "He's my trainer and he's like my best friend. We always have a good time here and always get stuff done and just get better each and every day.”

Morris started training in January of 2021. He said giving back was instilled in him early as he watched his father give rides to his teammates who were at risk of danger.

"We used to leave the field after practice and my dad would leave me there and take my teammates home because he was scared for their safety," said Morris. "He made it his business to volunteer his time and that stuck with me to give back."

Morris said he will continue to train athletes daily and is proud to be in the place that took a chance on him. 

"Bowling Green is very special. They do have the athletes, yes, but they also made me and everyone feel welcomed here," said Morris. "I just want to see them do well and give them my knowledge to help them be where I wanted to go as a kid."