If only QMJHL teams could sell their education packages before the draft as well as they do after it.

The Halifax Mooseheads apparently revealed new facts about what they have to offer and convinced Brent Andrews to announce yesterday he has abandoned his stated pre-draft plan to play NCAA hockey at the University of Maine.

Andrews, a highly-touted forward who Halifax picked in the first round (15th overall) in early June, joins a long list of top prospects — Angelo Esposito and Steven Anthony among them — who have experienced a post-draft change of heart.

“I realized how much the Q has to offer with education,” Andrews said. “It’s really underrated compared to what previous sources told me. It’s a good balance between school and hockey and the right spot to pursue my hockey career.”

Although prospects struggle to wrap their head around it, most Q graduates head to university in good financial shape. The league offers $16,000 for four years of education; teams supplement that with scholarships; and if players graduate to university hockey, more funding can come from the school.

“We don’t match NCAA packages — we can’t do that,” said Mooseheads general manager Cam Russell. “But you look at the big picture, you’re getting funds from three different entities, and it works out to something very similar.”

Russell was in big trouble if the Hunter River, P.E.I., native didn’t change his mind. He dealt No. 1 defenceman Gabriel O’Connor for the 15th pick used to select Andrews.

He sees the 6-foot-1, 183-pounder as a two-way power forward.

“He’s going to be an exciting player for us and for our fans for the next three or four years,” Russell said.

Andrews is looking forward to suiting up for the Herd.

“They’re a pretty young team, but hopefully we’ll rebuild over the next couple of years,” he said. “Hopefully I can help out and contribute as soon as possible.”

Two other Mooseheads picks, blue-liner Steve Gillard (181st) and forward Kody Orr (197th), are also eyeing the NCAA but could be at training camp, which opens Aug. 19.

Most Popular From ...