Local Big Man Andrew Morgan Chooses Nebraska Over Gophers for Rumored $200K

andrew morgan
Erin Woodiel / Argus Leader / USA TODAY NETWORK

The Minnesota Gophers men’s basketball program is facing a legitimately crucial moment in program history. While improvement is a good thing, it took three tries for Ben Johnson to finish a season with a winning record and Mark Coyle went public last week with just how sick and tired he is of not being included in the 68-team NCAA Tournament field, a clear message to his young head coach.

Portal season has been a mild rollercoaster, since Minnesota’s season ended in the second round of the NIT Tournament. They’ve lost some key pieces to the transfer portal, including hometown big man Pharrel Payne (Cottage Grove, MN), whose absence will undoubtedly hurt the most. But, leading scorer and rebounder, Dawson Garcia (Prior Lake, MN), has committed to returning. So has 2023 guard transfer, Mike Mitchell Jr.

In an effort to help fill the canyon-size void left in the front court, following Payne’s departure, the Gophers were hot and heavy on NDSU transfer big man, Andrew Morgan (Waseca, MN). The 6’10”, 245 lb senior big man averaged 12.9 points and 5 rebounds per game last year for the Bison.

Morgan can shoot from all over the floor and he’s a grinder personality, a farm kid. No really, Andrew’s major is in agriculture. When his basketball career is over, he’ll swap out his mesh shorts for some wranglers and hardwood floor for a 100-acre field.

On off-days at NDSU, according to Ryan James (247Sports), Morgan has spent a lot of his basketball off-time working on a nearby farm, honing his other professional craft. Those are the types of guys you want on your team. In the end, though, Morgan skirted the Gophers’ overtures and committed to Nebraska late Sunday.

Andrew Morgan chooses Nebraska over Minnesota Gophers

andrew morgan minnesota gophers nebraska cornhuskers
Credit: Evert Nelson/The Capital-Journal / USA TODAY NETWORK

Missing out on this kid will hurt, but it’s not like the Huskers stole Chet Holmgren from Dinkytown. Ben can find twenty Andrew Morgans in the transfer portal. Finding one who wants to play for Minnesota will be the more difficult part, but money talks.

Related: Dawson Garcia Announces Return to Minnesota Gophers for 2024-25 Season

Speaking of money, let’s get to why this article was written. It seems that Morgan was very close to committing to the Gophers, before deciding at the last-second on a flip to the Huskers. Why? An offer that was reportedly worth double what Minnesota put on the table, an offer that is rumored to be worth $200,000.

Now, NIL rumors and supposed offers are floated ever hour of every day, whether on the internet or in group chats. Everybody ‘knows a guy who is best friends with somebody’s sister, who heard [Player X] got a [Y Amount] NIL deal with [Z School]’.

How do we know how much the Gophers and Huskers offered?

Rarely ever do we bring those rumors to the surface here at MSF, for obvious reasons. They can’t be verified (or even close to verified) as true. But with Morgan’s offer, the amount has been all but verified by aforementioned local insider Ryan James (Gopher Illustrated, 247Sports, MaxPreps), who happens to be the most plugged-in MN high school and college basketball reporter in the state.

How did a message board rumor turn into a nearly-verified report? It all started in the (PAID) GopherIllustrated.com (247Sports network)Gopher Report‘ message boards, where one subscriber, who claimed to know Andrew’s situation personally, posted this comment in the board’s Gophers men’s basketball recruiting thread.

Andrew Morgan will not be coming to the U. Nebraska has offered a big bag. Andrew visited the U and was offered around 100K for next year, he at the time was looking for just a bit more. He then visited Nebraska and they offered in the ballpark of 200K.

Anonymous 247Sports subscriber – GBGopher26

As I mentioned earlier, a random subscriber with the username ‘GBGopher26’ throwing out a $200K NIL offer on a paid 247Sports message board is not a verifiable source of information worth bringing to anybody’s attention.

But, after the GBGopher26’s credibility was being questioned in the thread by other subscribers, Ryan James jumped in and threw a hot bucket of intrigue and credibility on the original post.

Instead of poo-pooing GBGopher26’s insider report, James confirmed the user as a reliable source of information, regarding Morgan’s situation, which all but verifies the user’s original “rumor” that Nebraska came through with a $200K offer for Andrew that the Gophers couldn’t get close to.

Jimmerchips (reply to GBGopher26): “like you know lol”

Ryan James (reply to Jimmerchips): “I’m pretty sure he does know”

GopherIllustrated.com ‘Gopher Report’ Chat Board

Related: Ben Johnson Optimistic that Worst of Gophers’ Transfer Portal Season is Behind Them

That wasn’t all James had to say about the situation, though. Another page later in the thread, Ryan jumps back in to expand on what happened with Morgan and why he chose Nebraska. As previously mentioned, it came down to one offer being double the other and… what living in Lincoln would be like vs life in Minneapolis.

This ended up being about two things, money and campus fit. Nebraska paid him twice as much, and Nebraska is a much better fit for what he wants to do in terms of where he wants to be.

Quick note, at North Dakota State he on a regular basis traveled a few short miles to work on a farm up there all the time. Much easier to do that in Lincoln that is in the Twin Cities

Ryan James (GopherIllustrated.com ‘Gopher Report’ Chat Board)

— I haven’t pumped up Gopher Illustrated in a while (I am in no way affiliated with them — in fact, they aren’t the biggest fans of me) so let’s pause here to remind everybody reading this article that these message boards, every day, are teeming with the best insider information and freshest Minnesota MBB recruiting steam. The ‘Gopher Report’ message board alone is worth the $10/mo (free subscription if you have Paramount+). If you are a huge Gophers fan and you aren’t on those boards regularly, you are missing out in a big way. —

It’s crazy to think that a likely bench player for the Nebraska Cornhuskers is making $200,000 to play basketball next season, but the evidence and reporting is all there. And is it really that surprising? There are millions and billions of dollars at stake in power-5 college football and basketball.

Related: Ben Johnson on Hot Seat? Mark Coyle Angry Gophers Missed NCAA Tournament Again

When winning is that lucrative, people are willing to pay for it. And if you want to win more games, what do you need? More talent. And now that you can pay for that talent, the price will only continue to skyrocket.

NOTE: I reached out to Andrew Morgan about 24 hours ago, to further verify these reports/rumors — He did not respond to my inquiries

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