Crew to host college combine on December 14
COLUMBUS – The Columbus Crew announced today that it is hosting a group of draft-eligible college players for a combine to evaluate some of the top young talent in the region ahead of the 2014 Major League Soccer SuperDraft. The event – by invitation only and not open to the public or media – is being run by the Crew’s First Team technical staff on Saturday, December 14 at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center at The Ohio State University.
“Our region has a strong track record of producing talented professional players. We see this as a competitive advantage as we plan to build future rosters,” said Crew Director of Soccer Operations Asher Mendelsohn. “The Combine is a first step in gaining a better understanding of the current player pool for the upcoming SuperDraft and an opportunity to build relationships with local soccer leaders for future player pools.”
Players are selected based on Columbus Crew First Team scouting, consultation with youth staff and local college coaches. In the session, the Crew First Team technical staff will evaluate the players’ ability to perform at the next level by conducting a series of diagnostics of their technical, tactical, physical and psychological attributes.
The Crew set a record for Homegrown Players in an MLS starting lineup on August 24, 2013 as four regional products Chad Barson (Akron), Matt Lampson (Ohio State), Ben Speas (Akron/University of North Carolina) and Wil Trapp (Akron) began the match, with each player significantly contributing to the Black & Gold’s efforts in 2013. Other colleges in the region have produced some of the top young talent in MLS in recent years, including the last two MLS Rookies of the Year: Chicago Fire defender Austin Berry (Louisville) and Colorado Rapids midfielder Dillon Powers (Notre Dame).
The Crew begins the 2014 season at D.C. United on Saturday, March 8. Before then, the club continues preparation for both stages of the MLS Re-Entry Draft, the 2014 MLS SuperDraft and preseason training.