Just days after he was officially announced as a member of Cornell men’s hockey’s class of 2021, Morgan Barron was selected by the New York Rangers with the 174th overall pick in the sixth round of the 2017 NHL Entry Draft.
— New York Rangers (@NYRangers) June 24, 2017
The Halifax, Nova Scotia, native was the ranked No. 88 among North Americans on the NHL Central Scouting Players to Watch List back in November, but slipped a bit to enter draft weekend at No. 98.
Regardless, he joins Cornell as part of a professional organization.
This past season, after battling back from a shoulder injury, Barron still managed to average more than a point per game with St. Andrew’s College, the largest all-boys boarding school in Canada. A two-time captain for the Saints, his 50 points in 46 games last season were slightly down from the year prior, where he put up 72 in 58 games.
In both 2015-16 and this past season, Barron led St. Andrews to consecutive CISAA provincial championships. And also in that 2015-16 year, he helped the Saints capture a Canadian national championship.
Barron took the road less traveled en route to both Cornell and the NHL draft. In an interview with The Pipeline Show, he said that despite his large stature today, he was a late bloomer and too small to play junior hockey at the age of 16.
“I was always the smaller kid on my team,” Barron said in an interview with The Pipeline Show earlier this month. “And then I had my growth spurt a little later than most guys do. … I want to be your prototypical type of NHL center … and use my size to my advantage.”
But no matter the path, he said the chance to come play at a university and program like Cornell was too good to pass up.
“Being able to get an Ivy League degree and with a top end program [and] being able to combine those two things are really something that was special to me and something that I wanted to be a part of,” Barron added. “As soon as they offered me I was definitely on board.”
Barron is the fifth Cornellian to be drafted by the Rangers franchise, following Gordie Lowe in 1964, Kevin Walker in 1974, Lance Nethery in 1977 and Pete Marcov in 1983.
Barron grew up a Toronto Maple Leafs fan, but has said he would be willing to give up the blue and white allegiance for whatever team calls his name. He will get a taste of what his future might hold when Cornell and Boston University play at Madison Square Garden this November.
Once Barron arrives to Ithaca in the fall, Cornell will have six NHL draft picks on campus. In addition to Barron, rising seniors Jared Fiegl (Arizona Coyotes) and Dwyer Tschantz (St. Louis Blues), rising juniors Anthony Angello (Pittsburgh Penguins) and Beau Starrett (Chicago Blackhawks) and fellow incoming freshmen Matt Cairns (Edmonton Oilers) have all been claimed in the NHL draft.