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Mikese Morse

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Mikese Morse
Mikese at the 2012 USA Indoor Championsips.jpg
Morse at the 2012 USA Indoor Championships in Albuquerque
Born

Mikese Morse (born October 30, 1987) is an American track and field athlete who specializes in the long jump. He has a personal best of 8.12 m (26 ft 7 ¾ in), set in 2016. He was third at the 2014 Jamaica International Invitational 8.08 m (26 ft 6 ¼ in), produced the farthest jump to ever not make the final at the 2015 USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships 8.02 m (26 ft 3 ¾ in) and won the 2016 Cayman Invitational 7.65 m (25 ft 1 ¼ in). Morse is a three-time United States Olympic Trials qualifier and two-time finalist (2008, 2016).

On June 24, 2018, Morse was arrested by police in Tampa, Florida, and charged with first-degree murder in the death of a bicyclist.[1][2]

Early life and athletic career[edit | edit source]

Mikese was born in Tampa, Florida, United States, but also grew up in other states. Morse attend high school in Texas at Chapel Hill High School, in Ohio at Shaker Heights High School and graduated from Tampa's Freedom High School in 2006.[3]

In 2004, Mikese was named to the All-East Texas basketball team after helping a Chapel Hill Bulldog team that lost nine of its 12 varsity players from the year before, make a Cinderella run through the playoffs to advance all the way to the regional final. Morse averaged 14 points a game for the Bulldogs.[3][4][5][6]

After moving to Ohio following his sophomore year in Texas, Mikese continued to play basketball and also tried his hand at track.[7][8] He originally joined the Shaker Heights track team just to help improve his basketball skills, but began to take the sport seriously after a foot-and-a-half improvement on his previous personal best at the state regional meet all of a sudden gave him the second best jump in the state and a shot at a state title."So then I said, `OK, maybe I could be pretty good at this,' "[9] At the 2005 Ohio state meet, Morse fouled out.[10]

After moving back to Tampa for his senior year, Mikese tried his hand at a third sport, American football. As a running back on Freedom's football team, he helped lead the Patriots to their first ever winning season in the fall of 2005.[11][12][13] In the spring of 2006, Morse helped lead Freedom to a regional track title by winning the long jump, high jump, and placing second in the triple jump at his school's regional meet.[14] As a state qualifier in the long jump, high jump and triple jump on a team that also featured Calvin Smith Jr., Morse was able to help Freedom nearly win the team state title despite only having five total team members, only three of which competed in individual events at the state meet, Freedom finished state runner-up by one point at the 2006 Florida Class 3A State Championships.[15]

College[edit | edit source]

After high school, Mikese left basketball and football behind him and focused on a track career at the University of South Florida. On May 3, 2008, as a sophomore at USF, Morse became the school's first ever individual Big East Conference champ after winning the long jump with a school record jump of 7.81 m (25 ft 7 ½ in).[16] After the 2008 Big East Championships, a third place jump of 7.60 m (24 ft 11 ¼ in)at the NCAA East Regional meet earned Mikese a place in his first ever NCAA Men's Division I Outdoor Track and Field Championships. At the 2008 NCAA Outdoor Championships, in the prelims, Morse was able to easily advanced on to the final by jumping the auto qualifying distance of 7.90 m (25 ft 11 in) on his first attempt.[17] The next day in the final, he earned All-American honors after placing 9th with a jump of 7.73 m (25 ft 4 ½ in).[18] At the 2008 Olympic Trials, Morse squeaked into the finals with his one fair jump of 7.79 m (25 ft 6 ¾ in) which placed him 12th. Morse was one of only three collegiate athletes to advance to the final.[19] In the final, like in the qualifying round, Morse was only able to manage one fair jump, Morse's one fair jump of 7.50 m (24 ft 7 ¼ in)in the final placed him 13th because a 13th athlete was allowed into the final because of a tie at third place in qualifying. After his 2008 season at USF, Morse transferred to the University of Miami.

After transferring to the University of Miami in the fall of 2008, Mikese was classified as a junior outdoors but was granted a sophomore classification indoors because he had not yet competed indoors collegiately, as USF didn't have men's indoor track while he competed for the program. During his first collegiate indoor campaign in 2009, Morse broke Horace Copeland's 17 year old UM indoor long jump record and automatically qualified for the NCAA Indoor Championships with a second place jump of 7.90 m (25 ft 11 in) at the ACC Indoor Championships. Florida State's Ngonidzashe Makusha won the event that year with an ACC record jump of 8.21 m (26 ft 11 ¼ ft). At the ACC Championships, Morse also placed second in the triple jump with a mark of 15.35 m (50 ft 4 ½ in).[20][21] At the 2009 NCAA Indoor Championships, Morse earned All-American honors for the second time in his career after a 5th place finish 7.80 m (25 ft 7 ¼ in).[22][23] Outdoors in 2009, Morse failed to qualify for the NCAA Championships with a top five finish at the East Regional qualifying meet as did the other two 2009 NCAA Indoor All-Americans in the field, one of which was two-time Olympic triple jump champion Christian Taylor, all three failed to jump over 7.32 m (24 ft).[24] That year, in addition to the three 2009 Indoor All-Americans in the field failing to advance to the National Championships with top five finishes, the reigning NCAA Outdoor champ Ngonidzashe Makusha also failed to advance to the NCAA Championships at the East Regional with a top five finish, however, he was allowed into the NCAA Championships that year after protest, and went on to successfully defend his title that year.[25][26] At the 2009 East Regional Morse jumped a distance of 6.96 m (22 ft 10 in) to place 19th. At the 2009 USA Outdoor track and Field Championships, Morse was the second highest collegiate finisher in the field with a jump of 7.87 m (25 ft 10 in).[27] Morse, having already broken Horace Copeland's 17 year old indoor long jump record that season, would have tied his then 17 year old outdoor long jump record jump of 7.87 m (25 ft 10 in) at the USA Championships, but the wind reading on his jump was just over the allowable legal limit of 2.0 m/s, Morse's jump had a 2.1 m/s tail wind. As was the case the year before at USF, Morse finished his 2009 season with a 13th place finish at the USA Track and Field Championships.[28][29]

Post collegiate career[edit | edit source]

Despite once having taken a year-and-a-half off from competition, Mikese had a mark on the USA’s comprehensive or absolute list for nine years straight until 2017 when he was only able to manage to jump 7.55 m (24 ft 9 ¼ in) on the season at the Tampa Baytaf Classic. Morse had jumped 7.85 m (25ft 9 ¼ in) or better at the previous five editions of the Baytaf Classic meet annually held at USF.[9][30][31][32][33] A 7.65 m (25 ft 1 ¼ in) jump at the Mastodon Opener, the inaugural meet held at IPFW’s indoor facility on December 3, 2011 helped Morse’s streak reach nine years.[34] After easing his way back into the sport in 2012 and 2013, Mikese began competing internationally in 2014. Some of the international competitions Morse has competed in include, the 2014 Jamaica International Invitational, the 2015 Manchester Great City Games, the 2016 Cayman Invitational and the 2017 Grenada Invitational meet which aired live on ESPN. Morse started his 2017 season with a disappointing 7.22 m (23 ft 8 ¼ in) jump and 6th place finish at the Grenada Invitational meet and ended his season with another disappointing 7.22 m (23 ft 8 ¼ in) effort at the USA Championships in Sacramento to finish in 19th place. Morse had jumped at least 7.92m (26 ft) at the three previous pinnacle USA meets.[35][36][37][38][39][40] Domestically, since his return to the sport in 2012, Morse has competed in eight USA Championships and has had three top five finishes (2012i, 2013i, 2014o).[41][42] After having not contested the triple jump outdoors in seven years, Mikese improved his outdoor PR from 15.22 m (49 ft 11 ¼ in) to 15.93 m (52 ft 3 ¼ in) in his first competition back in 2016.[43] Morse missed qualifying for the 2016 USA Olympic Trials in the triple jump with his season opening 15.93 m (52 ft 3 ¼ in) effort by 17 cm (6 ¾ in).[44] Morse only competed in the triple jump once in 2017 and opened his 2018 season in the long jump with a jump of 6.66m (21 ft 10 ¼ in) at the Kentucky Invitational in January.[45][32][46] In 2012, while in the process of making his return to the long jump, Morse told The Journal Gazette "I'm still developing now, and I'm just getting to the place now where I feel comfortable with the sport".[9]

Later life[edit | edit source]

Mikese Morse arrest photo (June 24, 2018)

Morse was arrested on the evening of June 24, 2018, in Tampa, and charged with first-degree murder and hit-and-run in the death of a bicyclist, who police said he deliberately struck earlier that day with the vehicle he was driving.[1][2]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Fiallo, Josh (June 25, 2018). "Driver deliberately struck family riding on New Tampa bike path, killing father, police say". Tampa Bay Times. Retrieved 2018-06-25. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 "Police: Hit-and-run suspect intentionally crashed into family, killing father". WTVT-TV Channel 13 Fox News. June 25, 2018. Retrieved 2018-06-25. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 "Mikese Morse Bio - GoUSFBulls.com—Official Athletics Web Site of the University of South Florida". Gousfbulls.com. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  4. [1][dead link]
  5. [2][dead link]
  6. "2003-2004 UIL Boys Basketball Playoffs 3A". Uiltexas.org. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  7. [3][dead link]
  8. [4][dead link]
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 [5][dead link]
  10. [6][dead link]
  11. [7][dead link]
  12. [8][dead link]
  13. "Patriot improving in leaps and bounds". Sptimes.com. 2006-04-17. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  14. [9][dead link]
  15. "Northoftampa: Track stars proud of second place". Sptimes.com. 2006-05-14. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  16. "Four Bulls Earn All-Conf. at B.E. Meet - GoUSFBulls.com—Official Athletics Web Site of the University of South Florida". Gousfbulls.com. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  17. "NCAA Division I Championship Results -- Flash Results, Inc". www.flashresults.com. 
  18. "Long jumper Morse earns All-America honors | Tampa Bay Times". Tampabay.com. 2008-06-13. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  19. "Morse Advances at Olympic Trials - GoUSFBulls.com—Official Athletics Web Site of the University of South Florida". Gousfbulls.com. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  20. "Atlantic Coast Conference : 2009 : Men - Team Rankings - Final Standings". Flashresults.com. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  21. "Mikese Morse named Muscle Milk Student-Athlete of the Week - University of Miami Hurricanes Official Athletic Site". Hurricanesports.com. 2009-03-02. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  22. "2009 NCAA Indoor Championships - Flash Results, Inc". Flashresults.com. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  23. "Murielle Ahoure Wins 200-Meter National Championship - University of Miami Hurricanes Official Athletic Site". Hurricanesports.com. 2009-03-13. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  24. "News - 2009 Results - NCAA D1 East Regional Track & Field Championship". Runnerspace.com. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  25. "Florida State Battles For NCAA Outdoor Titles In Arkansas - Florida State Seminoles Official Athletic Site". Seminoles.com. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  26. "NCAA Division I Championship Results - Flash Results, Inc". Flashresults.com. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  27. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-12-25. Retrieved 2016-10-14. 
  28. "Events - 2009 USA Outdoor Track & Field Championships". Usatf.org. 1991-08-30. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  29. "University of Miami Track and Field History and Records" (PDF). Hurricanepsorts.com. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  30. "USA Track & Field - Top Marks Lists". Usatf.org. Retrieved 2018-05-02. 
  31. "Lists". Trackandfieldnews.com. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  32. 32.0 32.1 http://www.tilastopaja.eu/ 2018-05-02
  33. http://halfmiletiming.com/event/baytaf-classic-openmasters/ 2018-05-02
  34. "Track & Field Results Reporting System". Tfrrs.org. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  35. "USA Track & Field - News & Notes - May 4". Usatf.org. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  36. "USA Track & Field - Manchester Great CityGames to air live on USATF.TV". Usatf.org. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  37. "VIDEO: Sada Williams third in Cayman Islands - NationNews Barbados - Local, Regional and International News". Nationnews.com. 2016-05-15. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  38. "ESPN Caribbean to Air Grenada Invitational Featuring Caribbean Stars and Olympians - ESPN MediaZone Caribbean". espnmediazone.com. 
  39. "2017 Grenada Invitational - info/results - 04/08/17". RunnerSpace.com. 
  40. http://www.usatf.org/Events---Calendar/2017/USATF-Outdoor-Championships.aspx
  41. "USA Track & Field - National Championships". Usatf.org. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  42. "History of US Nationals Results: Long Jump - Men". Trackandfieldnews.com. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  43. "Profile of Mikese MORSE". All-Athletics.com. 2016-12-20. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  44. "USA Track & Field - Status of Entries". Usatf.org. Retrieved 2016-12-24. 
  45. "TFRRS - Florida Relays". www.tfrrs.org. 
  46. "TFRRS - 2018 Kentucky Invitational". www.tfrrs.org. 


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