Surprise, surprise, MLS fans: Jordan Morris has been named the 2016 AT&T Rookie of the Year.
Signed in January to the richest Homegrown contract in MLS history, the Seattle Sounders and US men’s national team forward recorded one of the most celebrated rookie campaigns ever in 2016, setting an American rookie record and leading the Sounders with 12 goals in 34 regular season appearances. The 12 strikes mark the second-highest total for a rookie in MLS history, only trailing the rookie record of 17 goals set by Orlando City’s Cyle Larin last year.
In addition to his 12 tallies, Morris recorded four assists in 2016 and the Sounders compiled a 10-2-1 record in matches in which he scored. The Seattle native beat out Philadelphia Union defender Keegan Rosenberry and New York City FC attacker Jack Harrison for the award, taking nearly 45 percent of the combined player, media and club vote, roughly 15 percent more than runner-up Rosenberry.
A crucial part of Seattle’s late push to the Audi 2016 MLS Cup Playoffs, Morris has continued to produce in the postseason, starting all three of the Sounders’ playoff matches and registering an assist in the club’s 3-0 win against FC Dallas in the first leg of the Western Conference Semifinal series.
Morris’ strong play earned the Stanford University product a call-up to the USMNT for Friday’s World Cup qualifier against Mexico (7:45 p.m. ET, FS1, Univision) and Tuesday’s Hexagonal match at Costa Rica, but a hamstring injury suffered in the first half of Sunday’s second leg at Dallas will keep him out of both matches. It’s not yet clear whether or not the injury will affect his availability for the Western Conference Championship series, which will begin on Nov. 22 when Seattle host the Colorado Rapids at CenturyLink Field.
In total, Morris has 12 caps for the USMNT, including a memorable first goal in a 2-0 victory over Mexico in April 2015. The US has an undefeated 5-0-0 record in matches Morris has appeared in this year.
The award was voted on by MLS club management, media, and current MLS players. Below is a breakdown of the voting results:
|AT&T Rookie of the Year||Player Vote %||Media Vote %||Club Vote %||Average %|
|Jordan Morris (SEA)||47.33%||44.86%||42.67%||44.95%|
|Keegan Rosenberry (PHI)||20.00%||41.12%||30.67%||30.60%|
|Jack Harrison (NYC)||17.33%||9.35%||18.67%||15.12%|
All-Time AT&T Rookie of the Year Winners
- 2016: Jordan Morris – Seattle Sounders FC
- 2015: Cyle Larin – Orlando City SC
- 2014: Tesho Akindele – FC Dallas
- 2013: Dillon Powers – Colorado Rapids
- 2012: Austin Berry – Chicago Fire
- 2011: C.J. Sapong – Sporting Kansas City
- 2010: Andy Najar – D.C. United
- 2009: Omar Gonzalez – LA Galaxy
- 2008: Sean Franklin – LA Galaxy
- 2007: Maurice Edu – Toronto FC
- 2006: Jonathan Bornstein – Chivas USA
- 2005: Michael Parkhurst – New England Revolution
- 2004: Clint Dempsey – New England Revolution
- 2003: Damani Ralph – Chicago Fire
- 2002: Kyle Martino – Columbus Crew
- 2001: Rodrigo Faria - MetroStars
- 2000: Carlos Bocanegra – Chicago Fire
- 1999: Jay Heaps – Miami Fusion
- 1998: Ben Olsen – D.C. United
- 1997: Mike Duhaney – Tampa Bay Mutiny
- 1996: Steve Ralston – Tampa Bay Mutiny