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Report: Morris undecided on pro future despite Sounders offer

Jordan Morris USA Canada OLY (Getty Images)

U.S. Under-23 Men’s National Team forward Jordan Morris has long been expected to turn pro after his junior season at Stanford University, but a new report suggests he hasn’t made up his mind yet. is reporting that Morris has yet to commit to the idea of turning professional after this season, even though the Seattle Sounders remain waiting with the highest homegrown offer in MLS history. If Morris does opt to turn professional, a deal with the Sounders is reportedly the most likely option rather than a move abroad.

Morris has scored eight times for the Cardinal this season while also contributing two assists, despite missing considerable time while with the national team.

The 21-year-old forward, who recently led the U.S. in Olympic qualifying, has made six appearances for the senior team and scored his first senior goal against Mexico in April.

What do you think of the latest Morris news? Surprised to hear he is keeping his options open? Where do you expect him to be playing next season?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. This kid is pretty smart, as evidenced by him attending Stanford. this is what makes Merica great and at the same time is the Achilles heel of US soccer. We are a country that has opportunities for kids like Jordan to choose between having a world class education, a successful business career that will allow him to enjoy life OR turn pro, have a lucrative sports career that will allow him to enjoy life. His education will last a lifetime, and will be what supports him when his knee gets blown out from some Holden/dejong crushing tackle. It’s A tough decision either way, I respect the maturity in his decision making process. You don’t often see this in modern athletes.

    • Well said, but a good education will never be out of reach for this guy. A good career as a professional athlete and USMNT player could benefit from more and higher quality game experience and training.

  2. And Joe Biden is still not running for President. I hear that Jordan Morris is on track to enter graduate school at Stanford, so you’ll just have to wait.

  3. People ragged on Donovan for playing in MLS for many years but Morris snubbing pro offers to stay in college is a hundred times worse. Klinsmann wants his players to play in UCL level clubs but its pretty mind boggling that he enables Morris by continuing to call him up. He needs to take a hard stance and tell him if he wants to play on the senior team he needs to play professionally. Really Morris is only hurting himself by not taking advantage of the small window he has to be a professional athlete.

    • “Really Morris is only hurting himself by not taking advantage of the small window he has to be a professional athlete.”

      Please check the membership rolls for the Halls of Fame of every sport you can think of. Also look at the great Olympic performers in every sport you can think of. And make sure you check the rolls of US Soccer legends.

      Then tell me college is an impediment to professional athletic development.

      Is this anything more than another example of “well, that’s not how they do it in Europe so we must be wrong”?

  4. The guy is starting games for the Nat team and everyone here is going to save his career

    I’ll jump in
    Don’t go overseas
    So overrated and a vast wasteland of soccer players
    I hope Yedlin can be good enough to play or crappy Sunderland soon

    He can easily play wing professionally. I watched him Monday against the Huskies.
    He will easily make the jump. So he will fit in and play immediately. Will be fun to watch when it happens. In the meantime I hope the Stanford Washinton playoff game is here, so we can see him play again.

    • Moving abroad isn’t for everyone but “crappy Sunderland” would win MLS, not to mention the teams they compete against every week. I agree that moving to the Norwegian league because it’s Europe doesn’t make sense but there’s something to be said for at least testing yourself at a higher level. I don’t think you need to do it forever (i.e. I’m fine with Bradley and Clint coming back to MLS) but I do still see it as a positive.

  5. This guy should have turned pro at least two years ago. He is retarding his development by playing super low level college soccer against guys who will go on to become future lawyers and dentists. Every year out of thousands of college soccer players, maybe a couple of dozen at most get drafted and actually stick in MLS. Leo Stolz was NCAA player of the year and couldn’t even get on the bench for RBNY this season. Literally did not play a minute for the first team. Stop wasting your time, Jordan, at this low level. I question this kid’s desire to have a pro soccer career.

  6. Maybe.. hold on to your hats.. he doesnt want to be a pro? Someone going to Stanford has plenty of just as good/better, if not as lucrative, life options…

  7. Jordan’s growth is already stunted for those that think he hasn’t. Imagine where he would be if he was playing full time as a professional for the last two years. This is what Klinsman has been calling out about the lack of progress in the 17 – 21 year olds in the US pool. Right now the longer he stays in college the further he falls behind in his development going forward. Right now all I have seen is a player who is very quick, fast, very athletic with some good skill but not much more than that. Right now at Stanford he is mostly playing against players who are his age or younger and the vast majority of them will never be pro material. Very hard to be challenged and grow if this is your competition. Then to add the very short soccer season that is in the college game makes another reason why he may not develop much more than he is today. You got want to play against the best whenever you can this is called desire to excel others may call it heart. This is what separates the great players from the good players.

    • Exactly and some place like Holland or even Bundesliga 2 would be better than MLS. If he could do well there, then a top 5 European league is a good possibility.

    • And this is what will bother me about him, if he decides to stay another year, or two.

      Either I will think he lacks a wise humility, and believes time is not an issue and that he’ll be great no matter how much he plays against less than pro competition under less than pro coaching. Or, he lacks a healthy pride, and doesn’t yet think he’s ready to test the best players in the world on a regular basis.

      I imagine and hope it’s neither of those reasons, but. . .

      Does he care more about bringing Stanford a championship, or does he want to become the best possible player that he can be?

      For himself, his loved ones, his school, and his country, I think he should want to become the best possible player he has inside himself at this point.

      JM –
      You can always go back to learn at Stanford if you turn pro and get injured, but if you get injured there, you might never go pro.
      That said, if you would rather be a scientist than a soccer player, rather research than train, I have no problem with you staying in school and pursuing your more intense passion.

      I grew up a sports fan in Northern California/Denver, Colorado and only know that John Elway and Tiger Woods went to Stanford because of their legendary professional careers.

      • I don’t think that we can identify what is important to this young man and his family. and he doesn’t owe us at SBI Soccer any explanation.

        While Amphibian believes that Morris’ only goal should be to be the “best possible player he can be”, Morris and his family may have other goals for his short term and long term life. If he wants to stay in college for another year, even if it is to play soccer and try to win a PAC-10 or NCAA championship, good for him. Obviously if Amphibian had kids, the pressure or decision would be to turn pro. Maybe Morris comes from money and knows he can get a good job even if this football thing doesn’t work out.

        I doubt that Matt Lienhart, a QB from USC, wants to change his decision to stay for his 4th year, even though his pro career hasn’t panned out.

        If he stays in school, great; if he goes pro, great. But that isn’t our decision or even a position that we should debate.

      • “That said, if you would rather be a scientist than a soccer player, rather research than train, I have no problem with you staying in school and pursuing your more intense passion.” – AMP

        My quote there is specific to science since that is his major, but the idea is general: if this game is his priority, that’s fine, staying and going after what he wants most is a sound choice.

        You are the one making an assumption about me, at least I openly pondered about what might be going on in the guys head using phrases like “I hope, I think, I imagine”, but you state that it’s obvious that I would pressure my kid into going pro regardless of what they wanted. . .

        “Obviously if Amphibian had kids, the pressure or decision would be to turn pro.” – MWR

        If my kid had finished two years in college, and had a very special gift as a player, I would want him or her to make the most of that gift, especially if it was their primary passion. I think leaving would give them the best chance to have short and long term success. That would be my advice, not my “pressure”.

        If he comes from money, which he does, getting a good job/education won’t be a problem whether he turns pro now or not.

        Lienhart staying 5 years (yeah, 5) might have been a red flag about his passion to be the best he could be, which if you don’t have that drive, you won’t succeed for long in the professional ranks. Also, football is a bit different than soccer. Nobody in the NFL is under 20, so you can’t fall that far behind staying a couple years more in your college comfort zone. And finally, Matt was playing under one of the best coaches in the game, who had NFL experience to share with him. Jeremy Gunn never played or coached at a high level, and doesn’t appear to be the Dean Smith of soccer.

        “If he stays in school, great; if he goes pro, great.” – MWR

        I agree, I’m just saying that if he stays, it will suggest where his priorities lie.

        “But that isn’t our decision or even a position that we should debate.” – MWR

        Um, I’m not making the decision nor trying to, and yes, we can debate this all we want. Don’t you realize that what you just did was debating? Giving our opinion is what these comment boards are for. Speculating/over-analysing USMNT coaches and players is what we do here.

      • To the contrary Amphibian, I am not debating the Morris decision. My point, regardless of length, was intended to state that this is his decision not ours. I don’t think we have any ability to do anything other than to speculate whether leaving college and going pro is good or bad. For that matter, staying in MLS or going over seas is speculative and based on the individual. it does us no good to debate whether it is the right choice for an individual. No where in my post do I address the specific issues of Morris. I identified hypothetical situations that could apply to Morris or any other talented collegian.

      • In regard to Leinart . . he did red shirt a year, and then play 4 years at USC. And his professional career was unsuccessful from a playing standpoint. He didn’t get into the right team and still blames the professional coach for not giving him a fair chance . . i.e. a mean twitter remark following Wisenhunt’s firing at Tennessee last week.

        But his replacement at USC, Mark Sanchez, left school after 1 year as a starter – against the wishes of his college coach. He played for the Jets for a few years and was also unsuccessful. Who made the right decision? Both, neither?

      • Last, I didn’t mean to attack you in regard to the pressure or decision remark. You were decidedly clear that you felt going pro was better, and if that would be your “advice”, so be it. I don’t think that I was making any assumption about you, at least not in any other regard than the emphasis to turn pro early.

      • I wish that I could reply to you directly.

        You make a very good point bringing up Sanchez. I personally never rated Sanchez, and thought that he should have stayed in school.
        Leinart and Sanchez both went to poor situations though, and it wasn’t their choice (draft).

        Morris can go to the Sounders (a perennial playoff team) and learn from a solid coach, and work with Oba and fellow USMNT teammate Dempsey, or he can go to whatever team he wants overseas that offers him a contract.

        In the end, whether he goes pro or stays in school, attitude and luck will be the most important things determining his soccer career. That’s why I think if he has a good attitude and drive, he should go for it in the pros and test his luck.

        “My point, regardless of length, was intended to state that this is his decision not ours. I don’t think we have any ability to do anything other than to speculate whether leaving college and going pro is good or bad.”

        I’m not making decisions for him, I don’t know why you think I am.

        I’m speculating, like you say, and laying out my thought process for my speculation. You can’t just generally speculate on what’s better, “staying in college vs. going pro”. It depends on the situation and the individual, right? I’m not jumping that far to my conclusions, but using what I know about the situation and individual to make a little hop. I don’t think I’m stepping out of bounds doing so, either.

        This individual is already getting called up to play with the best of the best.
        It is my argument that spending another crucial year of his development playing limited games/practices against other college kids, after already being at Stanford for 2 years seems like a waste of time IF his goal is to be the best soccer player he can be.

        Obviously, as a huge fan of the USMNT, I want that to be his goal, and for him to continue to push his game to new heights, but if he has other ambitions/priorities that I’m unaware of, it would be best for him to stay in school.

        Even if I don’t have the complete story I’m allowed to have an opinion about which coach a club should hire, or where a coach should play a certain individual, or if a challenge a player made was reckless, right? Why is it wrong to have an opinion in this case?

    • Stay in school for another year. Your skills now are not going to allow you a first team spot in MLS, and you will not grow playing there or USL. Finish school and then go play in the Netherlands or Spain. If it doesn’t work out, you can always come back to MLS on your terms, not theirs.

  8. It’s obviously completely his decision. If he’s serious about trying to become the best player he can be, he needs to leave college. He needs a LOT of development – his decision making and awareness are lacking. He needs games, more than are available in college, and at a higher level than he’s been in thus far. But perhaps his priorities are different.

  9. I have a feeling it will all depend on how Stanford does in the NCAA tournament. I hope he decides it’s best for him to go pro, though.

    On another note I had no idea that UCLA’s talented striker Seyi Adekoya was a Seattle Sounder academy product as well. That guy is pretty good. Seattle Sounders could be a force in the years to come offensively with Morris and Adekoya.

    • The best talent should always keep trying for the best leagues no matter what country you’re from. The MLS will continue to make good talent better and serve well for those who don’t want to leave home, but playing actively for one of the top 5 leagues in Europe will always make you better, faster, than staying in the MLS.

  10. College girls are great and all, Jordan, and you can be the king of campus but imagine the possibilities as a professional athlete. Let that sink in for a moment. Seriously though, he needs to take the next step. He is more than ready. I don’t want his growth stunted by staying in college with inferior competition. I could see him having an immediate impact — a la Cyle Larin.

    • Good point. College girls are great, but a pro athlete has to beat ’em off with a stick. I have two words to remember–Sacha Kljestan. If looks are important, boy did he hit the jackpot.

  11. If I had to guess I think he will decide on another year at Stanford. He is probably loving that college life, and not liking the idea of sitting on the bench behind Oba and Dempsey. Also Jurgen and the youth-national team coaches under Jurgen have already shown that they will still reward him with callups despite Morris not being a professional. So what is his incentive to leave? The obvious answer is the $$ that will come from his contract, but that $$ will still be there a year from now, and right now he is a rich kid in college on a full-ride, so he probably doesn’t care about the money right now.

    • He gets hurt now he won’t ever draw a pro paycheck.

      One year’s salary covers his last year of Stanford.

      Every time he goes back to school that’s half a year less in possible total pro athlete paychecks.

      If he is waiting out the Sounders to not play on turf, the smarter play is not to waste one’s time a la Ibeagha and the Dynamo, but instead to either sign abroad or force a trade now.

      • Ibeagha was a US U-20/U-23 marginal who kept going back to Duke rather than signing with the Dynamo as a HGP. He didn’t want the 2+2 commitment, instead bounced around Denmark and is now in the Icelandic second division. I wonder what he thinks about a 4 year MLS deal for decent money now since he seems to have a new no-name club every 6 months. But he’s a free agent in control of his career……

      • +1

        If education is important to you, or a degree, you can always take classes when you have the time.

        I don’t care if you like the lifestyle/atmosphere of college, or your friends there, you owe it to yourself (and I would say your country) to try to become the best possible player you can be. And another year in the same situation is not going to force you to grow, and your early twenties is precious growing time for an athlete. If you haven’t soaked in all that a college lifestyle has to offer by your third year, I think it’s likely you never will.

        If you love your school, you’ll be able to support it better by doing well as a pro, and even if you help win two championships for Stanford, your legacy there would be dramatically enhanced if you could win a championship in MLS, or work your way into a top european league, or have a good long career as a USMNT regular. You have better odds at all those things if you jump into the professional ranks, thoughtfully, as soon as possible.

    • I say bravo to the kid. I am happy we have a kid who thinks for himself in the group. If and when he decides to commit himself to the professional game, I believe this quality will benefit him (and the USA) immensely.

      Moreover, all this talk of his development being slowed is very speculative, frankly. Really, how do we know this? Most of the arguments are illogical and in fact do not jive with the experiences of the great US players historically. Most of the legends of US soccer (particularly the ones who have had prolonged careers in Europe) have spent at least some time at college, while the prospects who rushed into pro careers have flamed out at a ridiculously high rate and have rarely succeeded abroad. The trend has not died down.

      Maybe it’s time people start considering the possibility that our unique system of high-profile university athletics (which really has no analogy elsewhere) might actually serve as as an anciallary *advantage* for our professional system. It isn’t for everyone, and nobody is arguing that the quality of soccer is anywhere near what it would be in an EPL reserve side, but since when is that the *best* place for our (or anybody’s players) anyway? Because these countries are better than us? Weak reason– we all know they would be anyway. Where is the proof that this is better than college? It doesn’t exist, since the college athletics system really isn’t an option in any other country…

      This sounds far-fetched to people for some reason. I struggle to understand why. Look at every other major global sport at which the US is successful and you will see that we are leveraging our universities to make the talent pool better. Basketball, track, swimming, you name it. In fact, world class athletes from other countries very frequently matriculate to US universities for this period in their development. It’s an option that really only exists here. Unless you happen to be a crew rower who lives in Oxford.

      Doing things simply because “that’s how they do them in other countries” has never been part of our culture. Why start now?

      • In the past I have been adamant in thinking Jordon Morris was wasting his talents in College but your line of thinking has me very intrigued and thinking of all the great players (Duece, Ali, lalas etcc) that did in fact spend some time in the college ranks. Wee done Cravin.

      • I always wondered about that too. It is never one size fits all. Some of our most successful exports started in college; even those that didn’t start in college started in MLS. The number of players who started their careers in Europe who were not already living there is not very high.

        Clint Dempsey- college player
        Claudio Reyna – college player
        Brian McBride- college player
        Joe Max Moore – college player
        Carlos Bocanegra- college player
        Steve Cherundelo college eplayer

      • Sorry, having our best 18-22 year old players spending four years playing a handful of games in the fall against super low level competition stunts their development and is in on way an “advantage” for US soccer. Sure, guys in the past succeeded after college when there wasn’t a realistic alternative but now there is and our elite players should not be playing college ball.

      • Well, the situations are different of course since universities in other countries don’t emphasize sports like in the US. Nevertheless, every other soccer nation wants to see their young players who are talented playing professionally as soon as they are capable of it. If every other country does it one way, maybe we should learn from them.

      • In response to Matt:

        Clint – 2 years in college. . .
        Reyna – 2 years
        Mcbride – 3 years
        Joe-Max Moore – 4 years
        Boca – 2 years
        Dolo – 1 year

        Some other players of high caliber from the college ranks that have played for us recently:

        Guzan – 1 year
        Pope – 3 years
        Bedoya – 2 years
        Friedel – 2 years
        Ramos – 3 years
        Keller – 3 years
        Wynalda – 2 years
        Cobi Jones – 3 years
        Balboa – 2 years
        Harkes – 2 years

        An average of 2.3 years in college.

      • Gary Page– Note that I am certainly not advocating for everyone to go to college and not turn pro. I’d think it’s likely be a small and declining percentage of our future pool, which is fine. But to discard it as “lost time” for those who choose that route simply doesn’t make sense to me — it isn’t supported by our past or recent history in soccer or any sport – past or current. And culturally, I would argue it makes sense.

        Compare our athletes to their global peer group, and American kids are far, far less ready to be professional athletes at 18. For most, the entry into the professional ranks will be their first time away from home. Compare that against the prospects they will encounter from Europe and S. America, many of whom will have been at full-time academies since the age of 12 or younger, and you can see why transitional problems happen. After all, how many countries can say that their Greatest Ever Player had to come home from Europe (twice) because of the common first semester illness known as homesickeness?

        Some players are ready for the pro life. More power to them. Off you go.

        But some aren’t, and I’m not convinced that the (clearly) reduced competition level and workload of university soccer is as expensive as some others assume. I look at the guys who have done stints in college I see our best achievers in Europe. I see guys who had prolonged peaks (in many cases into their 30s) in which they contributed to both their clubs and the USMNT as starters. And I see a litany of US captains and other leaders who must have developed those qualities somewhere….

        Only making an argument that universities have a potential to add vaue for some segment of our talent pool, while also helping us identify additional talent. And it’s funded by deep pocketed universities (who’d probably spend more if they began to see soccer is something worth investing more in). Which is nice, because the USSF and MLS are not rich.

        To your point… There is nothing wrong with borrowing the best of what’s already available out there. But if we have something they don’t, why not see if we can use it to our advantage?

      • With all due respect, you’re completely wrong.

        Sure, there are success stories, but those guys succeeded in spite of NCAA ball, not because of it.

        NCAA soccer breaks literally every single rule of youth soccer. The season only lasts THREE MONTHS for Pete’s sake. The level of talent is incredibly diluted because you have hundreds of schools spread out over the country rather than having all of the top players (and coaches) in one 20 team division. There’s no connection between the previous level (high school) and the next (pro) and so there is no continuity in a player’s development. All that matters are results. The players are stuck playing at the same level rather than being able to work their way up at their own pace (to the next age group, reserve team, or first team). The unlimited substitutions rule makes the game even more kick-and-run than it already is.

        Any great soccer player was already a starter professionally by the age of 22 and was probably already training with the first team at 18. Soccer players develop much younger than those of any other sport, and 22 isn’t so young. They can’t waste the most vital years of their development playing NCAA ball if they want to become the best.

        There are more registered youth soccer players in the US than anywhere in the world, we have world class facilities and nutrition, as well as great athletes (yes, the soccer players too), a professional league for 20 years, and we still have not produced a single world class field player yet. Just as Carlos Quieroz found in his report, the NCAA system is the biggest impediment to our success. Until we have an academy system as strong as the other countries’, we’ll always have second-rate soccer in this country.

      • I think you are not reading my argument correctly. I don’t think all players should go to university. Only that we shouldn’t regard it as an impediment as Carlos Quieroz does (exactly why are we listening to him anyway?).

        Players capable of going pro will increasingly do so. So why shut down something US Soccer and MLS don’t even fund that has historically helped us?

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