New era in EWC football begins with new coach Toriano Morgan

Athletic director Paul Bryant, left and A. Zachary Fauison Jr., the president at Edward Waters College, pose with new football coach Toriano Moore on Friday. (Justin Barney, News4Jax)

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A new era in Edward Waters football is on the way.

The Tigers introduced Toriano Morgan as the program’s 15th head coach on Friday, promising a winning brand of football and an offense that puts up points as the school segues into a future that includes a new football facility and a move into NCAA Division II.

After a pandemic-rocked season that saw the school play just three games in the spring and fire coach Greg Ruffin, change is on the horizon at EWC. The Tigers went 1-2 in that abbreviated season and mustered just three points on offense in those two losses.

The Tigers are heading towards a transition into NCAA Division II and the launch of their new football facility. EWC’s home debut in that $4.3 million facility will be Aug. 28 against Florida Memorial.

Morgan is thrilled to be the man at the front of the Tigers’ new era. He graduated high school at Dillard in Fort Lauderdale and later coached there. Morgan comes to EWC from Virginia State where he was the assistant head coach/offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach.

He served in a similar capacity at Virginia Union before that.

“Having the opportunity to lead a program in my home state where I know that there are some great student-athletes here in this program, develop them and ultimately win some football games is what drew me to this opportunity,” Morgan said.

Morgan said he has numerous goals, but it begins with academics and expands from there. From a football perspective, Morgan said that he intends to recruit heavily from within the area and “five hours in,” from Duval County.

“Everything is a process. We have to go in and we have to evaluate, realistically, where we are and implement our program, our scheme, on and off the field,” he said. “If we are able to get in, we look to be headed in the right direction this year.”

Athletic director Paul Bryant said that EWC received a diverse set of applicants from the 140 or so that they received. Those ranged from high school coaches to those with NFL experience.

School president A. Zachary Faison Jr. said that the school expects to hear by July 9 about the transition into the NCAA and the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. That would package the EWC with 14 Historically Black Colleges and Universities in the SIAC. EWC currently plays in the NAIA.

Edward Waters 2021 football schedule

Date, Opponent, Time

Aug. 28, vs. Florida Memorial, 4 p.m.

Sept. 4, Open

Sept. 11, at Benedict, 6 p.m.

Sept. 18, at Tuskegee, TBA

Sept. 25, vs. Lane, 6 p.m.

Oct. 2, at Morehouse, 2 p.m.

Oct. 9, at Albany State, 2 p.m.

Oct. 16, vs. Kentucky State, 3 p.m.

Oct. 23, vs. Central State, 2 p.m.*

Oct. 30, vs. Miles, 6 p.m.

Nov. 6, at Savannah State,

Nov. 11, at Allen, TBA^

* Homecoming

^AME Football Classic

About the Author:

Justin Barney joined News4Jax in February 2019, but he’s been covering sports on the First Coast for more than 20 years.