Mark Dantonio: Michigan State recruit Tre'Von Morgan offers shades of Plaxico Burress
East Lansing — If Michigan State landed a receiver on Wednesday that will one day have the sort of impact on the program Plaxico Burress did back in the late 1990s, then it was a heck of day for the Spartans.
Coach Mark Dantonio believes that might be the case, as the Spartans received a signed letter of intent from wide receiver Tre’Von Morgan of Massillon (Ohio) Washington.
“Tre’Von is a big-bodied receiver who reminds me a lot of Plaxico Burress in so many different ways,” Dantonio said in a statement. “Not just catching the ball and his catch radius, but also the way he attacks things and his aggressive play on the field as well. He comes from an outstanding program in Massillon, Ohio, and played for a state championship last year. He really was a dominant player for them throughout the year.”
Burress played two seasons at Michigan State, racking up 2,155 yards and 20 touchdowns before playing 11 seasons in the NFL with three teams.
Morgan was the lone signing Wednesday for the Spartans. The other 18 members of the class signed back in December during the early period. Morgan started to draw interest from Power Five schools his senior season, and intended to take several visits in January. Instead, he committed quickly to Michigan State and did not waver.
Rated as a four-star prospect by Rivals.com and a three-star at 247Sports.com, Morgan was ranked the top receiver in the state of Ohio by Rivals and the No. 2 receiver in the state by 247Sports. He helped lead Massillon Washington to a 14-1 record and a berth in Ohio Division II state championship game. Morgan finished his senior season with 37 catches for 691 yards and 12 touchdowns.
“We’re very excited about his opportunities as a Spartan,” Dantonio said. “He should have an opportunity to play early in his career.
“He’s another young man who had a great senior year. As a junior he probably wasn’t as dominant, but Coach Nate Moore has done an outstanding job there with them. … I think (Morgan) has a huge up-side. He was a ‘no-brainer’ to take when you watched him off his senior film.”
The signing gives Michigan State 19 players for the 2019 class, one that ranks in the top 30 in the nation.
The Spartans went heavy on the offensive line back in December, and it’s a group that highlights the class. However, the number of skill players was also impressive, even with the loss of running back Aaron Young and athlete Alante Brown late in the recruiting process.
“I actually think the skill positions are one of the strengths, too,” said Allen Trieu, Midwest recruiting analyst for 247Sports.com. “That may sound a little funny since they lost two guys in Aaron Young and Alante Brown out of those spots, but I think you add Tre’Von Morgan to (wide receivers) Jase Bowen and Tre Mosley and (running backs) Anthony Williams and Brandon Wright, and I think that’s a good group of offensive skill talent right there.
“To me those are two strengths of the clas,s and if you look at the whole, just the amount of size and athleticism they’re bringing in, you’ve got some true 6-6, 6-7 guys coming in the class, some very long kids and guys who have played multiple sports. So definitely, in my opinion upgrading the physical makeup of the roster in this class.”
Of Michigan State’s 19 signed players, seven already have enrolled as Michigan State prepares for spring practice, which will culminate with the annual Green and White game on April 13.
“Seven of those guys are here now, what we would call 'rookies,’” Dantonio said. “They're doing an outstanding job and they're adjusting to college football, college academics and college life. There's quite an adjustment.
“Spring ball starts here in March, so we're looking forward to that. We're extremely happy with our recruiting class and I think we have high quality players and high-quality people.”