This will hopefully be a busy week full of SuperDraft posts on here from me. The College Cup continues on this week as we move into the third round action. Some quality players with MLS dreams saw their Cup goals go away this past weekend with a few upsets across the board. If I get the time that I am hoping to this week I’ll go into some of those games.
But for now I am on the SuperDraft train talking the top defensive prospects. Last week I previewed some of the goalkeepers to keep an eye on going into January’s draft.
[box type="info" style="rounded"]Again, as I always disclaim before I write up one of these posts on the SuperDraft. Don’t get attached to the order that these players are in and don’t get attached to the names on the list. A lot can happen between now and MLS Combine. Not to mention with the Home Grown Players out there these days, we won’t see some of these guys go through the draft as it is. Lastly, if you see a guy you think I missed, feel free to comment below. But again, with that, don’t automatically expect him to make the next list.[/box]
There are a few defenders that could go early in the draft while some of these guys will be good late round selections.
London Woodberry (Maryland) - The senior defender is arguably one of the best in the country right now. He has ties to the FC Dallas system and will likely be a Home Grown product once the College Cup is over. Don’t be shocked if he sees plenty of time next year for Dallas. He is that ready.
Chad Barson (Akron) - Another senior defender that is tied to a MLS club, this time to the Columbus Crew (they have a really good academy system). He has been a key fixture for Caleb Porter for four seasons and more than likely Columbus will do the wise thing after this season and sign him up. Just like Woodberry, I’d expect to see plenty of him next season.
Walker Zimmerman (Furman) - The first Generation adidas prospect on this list and if he signs I’d expect him to be drafted in the top three. He is that good folks. He is big, strong and very athletic. Even at the age of 19, he has all the tools and ability to be a special player on the next level.
Eric Schoenle (West Virginia) - A guy that could have been a GA selection last year, will have to go through the Combine this season and hopes of getting a first or second round pick as a senior. He lead the Mountaineers in scoring this year with six goals from his center back spot. He still needs to add a little bulk to his size but he has all the tools to be a good defender in MLS.
Andrew Ferrell (Louisville) - Some are in love with this GA prospect, others seem to believe he’ll wait another year. Either what you spin it the kid is super athletic and could be a top 10 pick if he signs early. A natural CB, Ferrell has the tools to be a special player at the next level.
Joe Franco (Cal State Northridge) - I was only able to see one Northridge game this season but my focus was all on Franco. He is an outside back with loads of skill. He was the Big West Defender of the Year and is really an underrated kind of player for the draft. Highlight reels show him to be a consistent player and part of me sees a guy like Sean Franklin when I watched him earlier this year. Good at getting forward and just a solid defender.
Matt Wiet (UCLA) - Another Crew product here. Some believe it will come down to him and Barson for a HGP contract from Columbus, but I kind of see them snagging both young players here this winter. He has a good ability to win balls either in the air or on the ground. He is a smart player with good vision on the ball. He and Barson could be the future of their back line in Columbus if the Crew are wise about it.
Tommy Muller (Georgetown) - The Hoyas senior isn’t that big but his leadership ability and toughness make him a good selection here. I’ve been told that some scouts see him as another Michael Parkhurst type player, which isn’t a bad thing to be compared to.
Taylor Kemp (Maryland) - He was injured a bunch this season but being a natural left back is always worth talking about, seeing as how that is a tough position to find talent in MLS. I see him as a late sleeper in this draft and if his Combine is good enough someone smart will take him and be a big winner because of it.
Kyle Venter (New Mexico) - A three-year starter for the Lobos. He’s only a Junior so the GA status may be iffy on him unless MLS struggles to find their usual seven or so players. He could be on the outside looking in for that contract deal. He reads the game very well and has been a big reason why New Mexico is going deep into the College Cup.