The 2017 SuperDraft is a year away, but now that this year's draft is fully in the rearview it's as good a time as any to take a look at what the talent pool might look like for the next edition. Note: This list includes players without homegrown ties to clubs in Major League Soccer. As we saw this year, teams passing on homegrown players and the league denying homegrown claims will add names to the draft pool.
Abu Danladi, Forward, UCLA
Major League Soccer was unsuccessful in its attempt to sign the sophomore to a Generation adidas contract this season so you have to believe he will be their number one target next year. The Ghanaian had six goals and 10 assists for a Bruins team that fell way short of expectations as the preseason No. 1 ranked team.
Jason Wright, Forward, Rutgers
The Jamaican had a huge sophomore season, leading the Scarlet Knights with 13 goals and five assists and a unanimous Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year honor. He's on the radar for his country too, earning a call-up to Jamaica's January training camp.
Tim Kubel, Defender, Louisville
The sophomore, who like a lot of Germans is older than traditional second-year collegians, was talked about as a possible GA target this season but never received an offer. As a right back, he's one of the biggest offensive threats in all of college soccer. The former Borussia Dortmund U19 and U23 player scored five goals and added three assists in 2015.
Jeremy Ebobisse, Forward, Duke
The sophomore from Bethesda, Maryland, was talked up as a possible GA target after a sophomore season where he scored seven goals, one a completely ridiculous volley against Virginia I've already watched a dozen times or so. Look for him to be in the GA mix after his junior season.
Jackson Yueill, Midfielder, UCLA
Yueill was one of the most highly touted freshman coming in this season and while he and the Bruins struggled early in the season, the Minnesota native had a fine run of form to end the year that could put him in position for a GA deal and a possible first ever draft selection for his hometown Minnesota United.
Nick DePuy, Forward, UC Santa Barbara
DePuy's named was tossed around as a possible GA target after his junior season in part because the class was short on goal-scoring forwards. If he keeps his scoring touch in 2016 - he's scored 25 times over the past two seasons - he'll be one of the top seniors in the draft.
Francis Atuahene, Midfielder, Michigan
After a dynamic freshman season, the latest Ghanaian to star in college soccer will enter his sophomore season as not just one of the best freshman but one of the best players in the nation. He led the Wolverines with 10 goals and three assists in his rookie season.
Jacori Hayes, Midfielder, Wake Forest
Jacori was Mr. Clutch for the Demon Deacons in 2015, scoring five game-winning goals and adding five assists on a team that was knocked out in the quarterfinals by the eventual national champions. While he's played with Portland Timbers U23 in PDL, the Bowie, Maryland, native isn't homegrown tied to any club.
Tanner Thompson, Midfielder, Indiana
The brother of recent SuperDraft selection Ty Thompson and San Jose Earthquakes homegrown Tommy Thompson, Tanner is one of the top returning seniors in the nation. He led the Hoosiers with nine assists and also scored three goals in his 2015 campaign.
Geoffrey Acheampong, Forward, UC Santa Barbara
He didn't make quite the splash that was expected of him in his freshman season, but the Ghana native has the skill set that could land him a GA offer after a more consistent sophomore season.
Tucker Hume, Forward, North Carolina
As much as I hate talking about a player's size, Tucker's 6-foot-5 frame is hard to miss. The transfer from Rollins College made a huge splash with the Tar Heels in 2015 after sitting out a redshirt year. He led the team with 11 goals and five assists, mostly coming off the bench.
Nazeem Bartman, Forward, South Florida
Besides having one of the coolest names in all of college soccer, Bartman is also a dynamic forward who scored eight goals and added five assists in 2015 after transferring from junior college. The South African was a third-team All-American in 2015 after being named Division I Junior College Player of the Year in 2014.
Nathan Regis, Forward, Pfeiffer University
The forward from Trinidad & Tobago led his team to a national title and led the nation with 32 goals in 2015. In his career, he has 61 goals in 65 games. Sure, it's Division II, but ever heard of a player named Tesho Akindele?
Ricardo Perez, Midfielder, Creighton
The Blue Jays lost a ton of firepower to the SuperDraft this year in Fabian Herbers and Timo Pitter, but the cupboard won't be bare in 2016 with a player like Perez. The midfielder/forward from Mexico was third on the team in goals with six in 2015 and added a pair of assists.
Jorge Gomez Sanchez, Midfielder, Temple
This is a bit of a homer pick, but it's hard not to count this Spanish midfielder as a top prospect for next year's draft when he goes out and scores 13 goals and adds five assists in his first year in college soccer. He has one year left of eligibility to prove he's SuperDraft material.
Guillermo Delgado, Forward, Delaware
The Spaniard had a bit of a down year after getting some GA talk in his first two seasons, but a down year for him still saw him score 10 goals and add four assists for the Blue Hens. That gives him 37 goals and 11 assists for his career.
Zeiko Lewis, Midfielder, Boston College
Boston College surprised a lot of teams in the deadly ACC conference in 2015 and junior midfielder Zeiko Lewis was a big reason why (freshman Simon Enstrom was the other). His five goals and eight assists put him second on the team behind Enstrom. He also played for his native Bermuda in World Cup qualifying last spring.
Victor Souto, Midfielder, Akron
The Brazilian was a key figure in the Zips run to the College Cup in 2015 - he was six of six on PKs and finished with eight goals and two assists - and part of a core that will only be missing Richie Laryea in 2016.
Thales Moreno, Midfielder, Clemson
The Brazilian was impressive in Clemson's run to the national championship game and with a large and successful senior class a lot will be expected of him in 2016. He had five goals and four assists during his junior season in 2015.
Iman Mafi, Defender/Midfielder, Clemson
The junior from Norway was another Tiger who impressed during their postseason run to the College Cup final as a left back who can make a difference on both sides of the ball. He finished the year with four goals and eight assists and like Moreno will be expected to take more of a leadership role in his senior season.
Michael Amick, Defender, UCLA
Amick fell off the radar a little bit this season, particularly early on when the Bruins struggled and fell from preseason No. 1 to out of the rankings altogether. Look for his stock to rise back up with a return to the form that made him one of the best defenders in college soccer during the Bruins' run to the College Cup final in 2014.
Francis de Vries, Defender, St. Francis PA
While the Kiwi center back plays in a small conference, he's been touted as one of the top center back prospects in college soccer for the past couple years so look for his name to come up a lot this December.
Daniel Johnson, Midfielder, Louisville
Johnson had a breakout year with Louisville after playing sparingly at Maryland his first two seasons. He finished the season with five goals and on more than one occasion put in Man of the Match performances.
Brandon Aubrey, Defender, Notre Dame
Aubrey had a solid junior season starting in central defense for the Irish and continued to be a threat on offense with three goals and a pair of assists. He has six goals and three assists in 55 career matches.
Oyvind Alseth, Midfielder, Syracuse
While Julian Buescher got most of the attention for Syracuse's run to the College Cup, Oyvind Alseth was also a key factor in the Orange's midfield during their run. The Norwegian was named third-team All-ACC and finished the season with three goals and five assists.
Alec Ferrell, Goalkeeper, Wake Forest
While Ferrell was overshadowed by fellow ACC goalkeeper Andrew Tarbell, he had a solid season in goal for the Demon Deacons as evidenced by his second team All-ACC honor. With Tarbell off to MLS, the Ohio native will be the class of the conference.
David Goldsmith, Forward, Butler
The former West Bromwich Albion Academy player from Bristol, England saw his production slip in his junior season, six goals after a 12-goal sophomore campaign, but still made second team all-Big East after lighting up PDL with Michigan Bucks last summer.
Mac Steeves, Forward, Providence
Steeves had a big junior season, posting a career high in goals with 13. He isn't always the prettiest player to watch, but at 6-foot-4, his size will be enticing to MLS teams looking for a target forward. The Massachusetts native has 27 goals in 53 career matches for the Friars.
Chris Odoi-Atsem, Defender, Maryland
The Terps' right back had a standout year in 2015, earning second-team All-Big Ten honors and with Crognale and Suli Dainkeh in the middle will make up one of the best back lines in college soccer in 2016 (when healthy this year, their freshman left back Diego Silva was spectacular too).
Connor Maloney, Forward, Penn State
Maloney spent time with the Philadelphia Union Academy so there's reason to hope that he'll be eligible to sign as a homegrown player, but given the Keegan Rosenberry situation that went down recently it's a safer bet to assume that he'll be entering the SuperDraft. The same goes for next year's senior class of Union Academy alums that includes Colton Storm (North Carolina), Billy McConnell (Indiana) and Todd Pratzner (Xavier).
Other seniors-to-be to Watch:
- Robby Sagel, Defender, Penn State
- Napo Matsoso, Midfielder, Kentucky
- Kwame Awuah, Midfielder, UConn
- Niko Hansen, Forward, New Mexico
- Danny Deakin, Midfielder, South Carolina
- Pat Flynn, Forward, Bowling Green
- Joseph Holland, Midfielder, Hofstra
- Russell Cicerone, Forward, Buffalo
- Michael DeGraffenreidt, Defender, Louisville
- Mason Robertson, Forward, Washington
- Andrew Epstein, Goalkeeper, Stanford
- Brian Nana-Sinkham, Defender, Stanford
- Christian Thierjung, Forward, California
- Padraic McCullaugh, Forward, Villanova
- Alex Crognale, Defender, Maryland
- Reagan Dunk, Defender, Denver
- Marvin Hezel, Defender, Florida International
- Chris Wehan, Midfielder, New Mexico
- Brandt Bronico, Midfielder, Charlotte
- Nick Lima, Defender, California