This was a banner year for the Syracuse Orange men's soccer team. They took a very young and unproven team and gelled over the course of the season to finish number four overall in the polls with a trip to the College Cup for the first time in program history. Now they're looking to set records in the postseason as well.
Last year, Alex Bono made history by being the first Top 10 draft pick in program history and Skylar Thomas became the second first rounder. The duo were the fourth and fifth overall SuperDraft picks for the program and were soon joined by the sixth, fullback Jordan Murrell. Bono was also the first player to leave early for a Generation Adidas contract with the league. What amounted to a crazy amount of talent leaving the program didn't bode well for this year. However, Coach McIntyre seems to like to reload rather than rebuild and we're now sitting here with two more potential Top 10 draft picks.
According to TopDrawerSoccer.com in their first 2016 MLS Mock Draft of the season, if he goes, Julian Buescher is projected to be the #10 overall pick in the draft, staying in the Northeast with the New England Revolution. He's projected to be followed soon after by his compatriot in the attack, Ben Polk at #12 to the Los Angeles Galaxy.
They mention the possibility of Buescher being shifted farther back the pitch if he heads to New England. As a strong possession based player with a penchant for picking the pass, he could definitely shift to a true central midfielder rather than the Number 10 role that he's been occupying the past two years. It would be slightly harder to push him back to a Jermaine Jones style role and have themselves a new "stopper." He's good tracking back, but it's not his forte. In order to be selected, he'll have to be extended and accept a Generation Adidas contract prior to the draft, much like Bono last year.
The possibility of Polk heading to LA would be an intriguing one. The Galaxy know how to develop young forwards and this would be a great opportunity for Polk to work with some real quality talent out there. Per the mock, TDS considers him the best of the Forward options out there that aren't dependent on accepting a Generation Adidas contract, so his spot could change based on who accepts in the next two weeks.
Syracuse Players Selected in MLS SuperDraft
|2004||Chris Aloisi||Los Angeles||6th||57th|
|2007||Richard Asante||Toronto FC||3rd||27th|
|2009||Kyle Hall||Toronto FC||3rd||39th|
|2014||Alex Bono||Toronto FC||1st||6th|
|2014||Skylar Thomas||Toronto FC||1st||11th|
|2014||Jordan Murrell||Real Salt Lake||3rd||57th|