When one thinks of Texas football, a lot of schools come immediately to mind. However, the University of Texas-San Antonio isn’t commonly one of those.
UTSA was making the transition to FBS eligibility when tight end David Morgan arrived on campus. Four years later, he left as the first player in Roadrunners history to be named on All-America lists.
While he doesn’t have great downfield speed, he accomplished a lot at UTSA, especially as a senior when he caught 45 passes for 566 yards and five touchdowns. He showed the scouts of the Minnesota Vikings enough that they made him a sixth-round draft pick based on his versatility and his ability to do a lot of things well, from receiving to blocking.
Asked if he was excited about the prospect of working with Norv Turner, who has a long history of developing tight ends, Morgan said he can’t wait to get to Minnesota and start learning from the master.
“Definitely,” Morgan said. “He definitely has pumped out some great players at tight end and gets them involved a lot in the offense. Just being able to play in a tight end-heavy offense and have a bunch of guys around is going to be awesome. I am sure I can bring a lot to the table for them.”
Making the roster won’t be easy. The Vikings already have a full tight end room with Kyle Rudolph, Rhett Ellison, MyCole Pruitt and Brian Leonhardt. With veterans in front of him, it may be an uphill battle for Morgan to fight and climb, but he feels he brings a lot of positives to the table and that the Vikings and Turner can help maximize his skill set.
“I feel like I can do a lot of different things,” Morgan said. “I feel like I am able to create mismatches in different spots, so that is why I liked the way I was used in college. I feel like I am going to be able to do the same thing at the next level. I feel like my best trait at the next level will be in-line with my blocking. I take a lot of pride in that so I am ready to put it to work.”
Being the first All-America at UTSA was a thrill for Morgan, who feels he is one of the players that will be looked back on years from now as one of the pioneer players who was a big part of the school’s move up to the big time of college football.
He wasn’t there to see it all bear fruit – head coach Larry Coker was fired at the end of the last season – but he sees that the foundation for growth has been set and he was proud to be a part of it.
“It was awesome,” Morgan said. “Down at UTSA that was something I was looking forward to. That was a big reason I went to UTSA, to lay a foundation and start a program, to be the first team to win a bowl game, or conference championship or whatever it is. As an All-American it is not all about yourself, but being the first one it is an incredible honor and being the first to be drafted in the NFL is even more incredible.”
As a late-round picks on a team that is returning almost all of its players from the previous season, cracking the 53-man roster will be a daunting challenge, but all Morgan wants is the chance to show what he can do and, with hard work, he’s convinced he can further the progress of UTSA by putting one of its alumni players in the NFL.
“This is an incredible opportunity,” Morgan said. “Growing up, you always dream about playing in the NFL, but it is crazy to have this opportunity in front of me. I have put in a lot of time and being underrated my whole life, just having this opportunity with the Vikings organization reaching out to me and ask me to be a part of this is an incredible opportunity. I am so thankful.”