The Scrimmage Interview: Markis Merrill & Ben Endress
Eric Bailey (EBay) from The Scrimmage spent some time with Jacksonville State football players Markis Merrill and Ben Endress. This is the interview that aired Tuesday night on The Scrimmage.
EBay: Alright, it’s EBay from The Scrimmage. I’m here with JSU wide receiver Markis Merrill and linebacker Ben Endress. I want to talk to y’all about how you got to JSU. How did that come about?
Merrill: Well, the way I got to JSU was kind of a last-minute thing. Coach Crowe had a coach, I forgot his name, but he came down on a visit and brought me up here. I just went ahead and committed as a last-minute thing. That’s how I got here.
EBay: Respect, respect. What about you, Ben?
Endress: Well I didn’t have any offers coming out of high school. Coach Thurmond was here at the time. He called me and wanted me to walk-on down here. It was my only option if I wanted to keep playing football so that’s what I decided to do.
EBay: OK. Well you know, people say college football becomes like a full-time job. What pushes you to keep wanting to play after the long mornings, getting up early for workouts and then having tutoring at the end of the day. What keeps pushing you to keep wanting to play the game?
Endress: It’s just the love of the game, man. It’s just the feeling you get on Fridays, Saturdays and game days. You can’t beat that feeling. You know you won’t ever get it again after football is over for you. That’s just one thing that keeps me going.
Merrill: It’s pretty much just like a childhood dream. When you’ve been loving it all your life you just want to keep doing it and keep doing it. It’s something that just keeps you going every day.
EBay: Alright, Markis. You know you’ve been an inspirational story to the people who’ve been following you. You’ve had some injuries and people thought you weren’t going to play again. How did you keep your faith, perseverance and keep wanting to play? After you scored against Michigan State, It was a very inspirational story. Talk about that.
Merrill: It was pretty much a long process. I just kept God first. I just kept on pushing through everything and just working through it. I had to get the strength back in my hip and get my hamstring stretched back out and everything. The touchdown really just got me feeling like I’m back to where I was last year. I’m just ready to go and have a good season this year.
EBay: Alright, Ben. It’s your last year at JSU. First of all, what are your team goals and then what are your individual goals as a player for this season?
Endress: My team goals are obviously to win the conference and then get into the playoffs and win the national championship. That’s my team goals, ultimately. Personal goals, I’d just like to try to lead the team in tackles, make all conference and do anything I can to help achieve out team goals.
EBay: Alright, Michigan State was rough. But, they were a top 10 team. Do you feel like everyone else left on the schedule is in for it? Do you feel like the rest of the conference is in trouble?
Endress: I just feel like we’re going to take every week the same way we looked at Michigan State. We’re going to prepare fore them the exact same and play them like they’re the best team on out schedule.
Merrill: That’s pretty much it. We’ve just got to look at it the same every week. We have to prepare the same way and go out and play the same way, actually better than we did at Michigan State.
Don’t miss The Scrimmage live every Tuesday from 7-9 p.m. on 91.9 FM WLJS. You’ll hear exclusive interviews like this and take a trip around the world of sports.