Dr. Merlin Morrow
Dr. Merlin Morrow
Year: 2015
Team: Athletic Director/Faculty
In 1981, Dr. Merlin Morrow came to HSU as Chairman of the Physical Education and Recreation Department. He was charged with the responsibility of restructuring the undergraduate physical education curriculum, developing a curriculum for a major in Recreation and developing a graduate degree in Physical Education. He was also in charge to develop a master plan for facilities development for physical education, intramurals and athletics. The responsibilities of athletic director were added in 1989. Shortly there-after he was given the responsibility to reorganize that athletics department which included moving the program from its NCAA Division I level to Division III. The reorganization included reinstating women's basketball after a four-year absence and football after a 27-year absence. During his tenure as Chairman of Physical Education and Director of Athletics, the college built a new baseball stadium, a new athletic field house, a new football stadium and developed several new practice fields. Hardin-Simmons athletics also enjoyed tremendous success under his leadership.
 

In January of 1995, Dr. Morrow contracted acute rheumatoid arthritis which disabled him for almost a year. In March of that year, he resigned as Director of Athletics. During his recovery, he was given a two-year commission, by the university, to write the history of HSU Athletics, Hardin-Simmons University Athletics: The First Century 1897-1997. He began in May 1995 and finished the manuscript in April 1997. He was a tenured Professor of Physical Education and, at the beginning of the 1997-98 academic year became a full-time professor in the Physical Education Department.