Kyle Venter, the big defender from The University of New Mexico isn't expected to go very early in the 2014 Super Draft but his chances of going to a team that will use him immediately is very good. The Union could put a players with Kyle's talent to good use, which is why we picked the talented defender in the Mock draft.
Venter made quite an impression on the Lobos in his 86 matches over the course of his college career. He is the first ever three time all American from New Mexico and should have no problem adapting to a new system and the speed of play considering that he has consistently achieved academic accolades an well
Venter has the perfect size for a MLS centerback. Standing at six foot three and 190 pounds, Venter looks like he should be dominant in the air even at the pro level. Scouts started noticing Venter as a sophomore, marking out current Los Angeles Galaxy homegrown talent Gyasi Zardes. Venter also broke the school record this past season for career minutes If he gets the proper coaching, he can turn into a solid MLS centerback. MLSsoccer.com projects him as a Clarence Goodson-type centerback. A George John comparison works here as well.
Despite his size, Venter hasn't quite learned how to use his size and strength to full effect in enough moments. I watched the College Cup semi-final where New Mexico played soon-to-be champs Notre Dame, and during corner kicks Venter either seemed lost or wasn't in very good position to stop Notre Dame from getting good aerial opportunities.
What the Union will be looking for: Adding defensive depth should be a big priority for John Hackworth, especially at centerback.
What the experts say: The opinions on the redshirt senior vary wildly. After rejecting a Generation Adidas last year and returning to New Mexico for his senior season, Venter was seen as one of the best centerbacks in the country and a projected top 10 pick. He had a less than impressive senior season by many scouts' eyes, although his team did make it to the College Cup semifinals. There are still some scouts who see Venter as one of the best seniors in the draft, but others have him falling into the late 1st round.
Why I'm invariably wrong: Many experts still think Venter deserves a 1st round grade. They feel his size and strength are too alluring for him to drop into the second round
Why I'm smarter than the experts: Venter's boom/bust potential makes him the kind of prospect that can slip out of the second round, especially in a year like this where centerback depth in the draft is so strong.
Full Mock Draft results (click on player names to see the profiles)
|1. D.C. United||Black and Red United||Patrick Mullins|
|2. Philadelphia Union||Brotherly Game||Steve Neumann|
|3. Vancouver Whitecaps||86 Forever||Andre Blake|
|4. Columbus Crew||Massive Report||Steve Birnbaum|
|5. FC Dallas||Big D Soccer||Christian Dean|
|6. Union||Brotherly Game||Marlon Hairston|
|7. Whitecaps||86 Forever||Damion Lowe|
|8. Chicago Fire||Hot Time In Old Town||Grant Van De Casteele|
|9. San Jose Earthquakes||Quake, Rattle and Goal||Eric Miller|
|10. Montreal Impact||Mount Royal Soccer||A.J Corrado|
|11. Colorado Rapids||Burgundy Wave||Schillo Tshuma|
|12. New England Revolution||The Bent Musket||JJ Koval|
|13. Seattle Sounders||Sounder at Heart||Aodhan Quinn|
|14. LA Galaxy||LAG Confidential||Fifi Baiden|
|15. Toronto FC||Waking the Red||AJ Cochran|
|16. Houston Dynamo||Dynamo Theory||Mamadou Diouf|
|17. Portland Timbers||Stumptown Footy||Reinaldo Brenes|
|18. Real Salt Lake||RSL Soapbox||Ben Sweat|
|19. Revolution||The Bent Musket||Marco Franco|
|20. Chivas USA||The Goat Parade||Enrique Cardenas|
|21. Sounders||Sounder at Heart||Taylor Peay|
|22. New York Red Bulls||Once a Metro||Pete Caringi|
|23. Crew||Massive Report||Pedro Ribeiro|
|24. Toronto FC||Waking the Red||Joey Dillon|
|25. Union||Brotherly Game||Jared Watts|
|26. Timbers||Stumptown Footy||Kevin Cope|
|27. Union||Brotherly Game||Kyle Venter|
|28. Earthquakes||Quake, Rattle and Goal||Mackenzie Pridham|
|29. Impact||Mout Royal Soccer||Jimmy Ockford|
|30. Whitecaps||86 Forever||Nikita Kotlov|
|31. Revolution||The Bent Musket||Victor Chavez|
|32. Dynamo||Dynamo Theory||Kristopher Tyrpak|
|33. Rapids||Burgundy Wave||Rafael Diaz|
|34. Red bulls||Once a Metro||Alex Martinez|
|35. Rapids||Burgundy Wave||Zach Bolden|
|36. Timbers||Stumptown Footy||Mark Sherrod|
|37. Impact||Mout Royal Soccer||Michael Calderon|
|38. Sporting Kansas City||The Daily Wiz|