Four-star 2022 QB MJ Morris talks recruitment, plans to visit NU, baseball and more

Nebraska head coach Scott Frost (right) talks with quarterback coach Mario Verduzco during warmups before the Red-White Spring Game in 2019.

MJ Morris had to rehabilitate from surgery and learn a new system at a new school as a junior last fall. 

Of course, like all high school athletes being recruited by Division I schools, his process has been slowed by the NCAA’s recruiting dead period since it went into force in March 2020.

The four-star class of 2022 quarterback from Georgia, though, seems to be taking all the change and all of the challenges in stride.

“It was just a mindset thing,” Morris told the Journal Star. “I wasn’t able to really lift weights or anything and I was limited throwing, so the first part of the season was a little bit tough. Then I was at a new school, new system I didn’t really know too well, so it was a lot different. …

“But during the season, I really started to feel comfortable and like I can trust myself, and now I’m just ready to go for my senior season.”

Morris is still highly regarded in the recruiting world despite missing some of his junior year. The Nebraska target is considered the No. 4 dual-threat quarterback in the country and the No. 94 player nationally by 247Sports despite the missed time, and the No. 5 dual-threat QB (No. 196 player nationally) by Rivals.

He built that résumé in his first two high school seasons at Carrollton High in Georgia before transferring this year to Pace Academy in Atlanta. He took over the varsity job as a freshman and helped Carrollton to a playoff run. Then as a sophomore, Morris threw for 2,186 yards, 20 touchdowns and six interceptions, and rushed for 379 yards and eight more scores, leading Carrollton to an 11-2 mark and a deep playoff run before losing to Buford — with Husker freshmen Gabe Ervin and Malik Williams, among others — 24-21.

He had to work into his junior year slowly after hip surgery, but if he’s flying a bit under the radar now despite his lofty recruiting rankings, it doesn’t both him.

“There’s nothing I can do about it, I’m not really focused on that,” Morris said. “I’m just focused on my senior year and just coming for that spot and doing whatever I can to be the best I can be. It’s just motivation to me if people don’t think I’m as good as anybody else. I just take that to heart and go out and prove it.”

Morris threw for 1,180 yards, 14 touchdowns and three interceptions as a junior in a more under-center, pro-style offense. 

This spring, the 6-foot-2, 190-pounder is healthy and patrolling center field for the Pace Academy baseball team. With regional play underway, much of Morris’ attention is there. However, he’s also hoping to make his college football decision sometime in May. Considering the earliest the NCAA’s dead period can end is May 31, that means Morris is looking at committing before he can take official visits.

“It hasn’t been too tough,” Morris said of juggling both. “I’m playing baseball every day and on the weekends, but in the next couple weeks, we won’t have baseball on the weekends anymore.

“Once those die down, I’m definitely going to try to take visits to a couple of schools that I’m looking at but have never been able to see before.”

Who’s he going to see? The plan as of now is Nebraska, Stanford, Florida State and Georgia Tech.

“I don’t know if the NCAA is going to push back (the dead period) even more. I can’t really trust it right now,” Morris said. “I’d like to go ahead and try to commit sometime in May. So my family and I are going to try to fly to some of those places, drive to some of those places and just get a feel for campus and a feel of the place and see how I like it, then make a decision from there.”

There are others involved, too, including North Carolina State and Arkansas.

Nebraska offered Morris a year ago, but he said the Huskers’ pursuit really ramped up around January. He’s in regular communication with quarterbacks coach Mario Verduzco and coach Scott Frost.

“I love those guys,” Morris said. “I talk to Coach Verduzco all the time and I love how knowledgeable he is of the game and how much he knows about quarterbacks and how he can help develop quarterbacks and get them ready for the NFL, which is a dream of mine. That’s what I’m looking for in a coach.

“And then Coach Frost, you can’t really find another head coach that knows as much about the position as him because he’s played the position, played it at a high level and had success there.”

His family feels the same way.

“My mom loves (Frost). She talked to him, I want to say last week, and my dad has talked to him two or three times, and when they got off the phone, they were like, ‘I like Coach Frost a lot,'” Morris said.

NU, of course, has offers out to several class of 2022 quarterbacks, but after several came off the board in recent weeks around the country, the list has narrowed some. Morris and Richard Torres (San Antonio) are two of the key names to know over the next couple of months.


* Nebraska is tentatively planning on holding a series of camps in June if the NCAA gives the green light. According to, NU is looking at Friday Night Lights camps on June 4 and June 18, a quarterback-specific camp on June 5 and Adidas’ “Pipeline” lineman camp on June 19.

* Another quarterback to keep an eye on: class of 2023 prospect Reese Mooney (Denham Springs, Louisiana).

The underclassman is currently committed to play baseball at Houston, but he’s getting recruited to play football and has an early Husker offer. His father grew up a diehard Nebraska fan and Mooney called NU a “childhood dream school” when the Huskers offered in April 2020.

He’s been in regular contact with the coaching staff and told the Journal Star he’s planning on making the trip to Lincoln in the next few weeks to see campus.

* Class of 2022 offensive lineman Sullivan Weidman said Thursday that he planned to visit four schools in five days, Nebraska included. 

The 6-6, 300-pounder from the Boston area said he planned to see Virginia, West Virginia, Pitt and NU over a short span. He’s held a Husker offer for more than a year.