MOORHEAD - The top senior 9-man player in North Dakota has decided to play football for Minnesota State Moorhead.

Westhope-Newburg-Glenburn quarterback Hunter Braaten has verbally committed to the Dragons. Braaten led his team to the 9-man state title game last fall and was named the senior player of the year in the division.

"The biggest thing was their coaching staff," Braaten said of committing to MSUM. "The way they got to know me. It got me excited about them."

In his final prep season, Braaten rushed for more than 1,600 yards and 27 touchdowns and passed for more than 1,100 yards and 10 touchdowns.

The 5-foot-10, 160-pound Braaten said he's projected to play slot wide receiver for the Dragons.

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"I'm really excited about that," said Braaten, who expects to redshirt in his first season at MSUM.

"He's probably the best slot receiver you haven't seen yet, and I stress yet," said Westhope-Newburg-Glenburn head coach Tom Nesvold. "He's a total athlete. He has that 'it' factor in the open field."

Braaten said Northern State and the University of Mary were also among his final choices. Braaten said he also received walk-on interest from the University of North Dakota.

The Dragons won four games last season, their most victories in a season since 2007.

"They have rebuilt the program within the last few years into something that is going to be really good as far as I can see," Braaten said. "I feel we are going to end up being a pretty good team."