Accolades for prospect Morgan Barron, but will he sign?

Morgan Barron is interviewed after being selected 174th overall by the New York Rangers(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

The New York Rangers’ best forward prospect is Cornell center Morgan Barron. He just received some prestigious honors and hasn’t decided if he will turn pro after his junior season.

The honors keep piling up for Morgan Barron.  The 21-year old center had an outstanding season for Cornell, the top ranked team in the nation.  He was just named the ECHC Player of the Year, two days after being announced as a one of 10 finalists for the Hobey Baker Award.

Barron was a late round gem, picked 174th overall in the sixth round of the 2017 NHL Entry Draft.  This season he led the team with 14 goals and 18 assists and also added five power play goals, his best output in three years.

He was fifth in the ECAC in goals and sixth in points and his plus/minus rating of +17 was one of the best in the conference.

Barron was the team captain and stands 6’3″, 214 pounds. He is the full package.

One area that Barron, a center, needs to work on is faceoffs.  This season, he won only 103 of 284 draws, a mediocre 36% success ratio.   In fact, in 30 games he never won more draws than he lost.

Distinguished company

Oh yes,this week he was also named to the All-ECAC Hockey First Team for the second straight year. He’s the first Cornell player to be so honored since Joe Nieuwendyk in 1986 and 1987.  Not bad company.

The Hobey Baker honor is significant as it is awarded to the best player in college hockey.

The Rangers have had a number of Hobey Baker Award winners play for them, including Jimmy Vesey, Chris Drury, George McPhee and Matt Gilroy, but they have only drafted one player, defenseman Mike Mottau, who went on to win the award.

Will he turn pro?

Barron has the option of returning to Cornell for his senior year or turning pro next season.  The cancellation of the NCAA playoffs must have been a bitter disappointment for Barron with the Cornell Big Red one of the favorites to take the Frozen Four title.

Barron could choose to pursue that dream his senior year or choose to sign an entry level contract.  He hasn’t given an indication as to what he is going to do.

With the college season aborted and the NCAA playoffs cancelled,  Barron has a lot of time to make up  his mind.