Jan. 12, 2012
Los Angeles Galaxy Select Tommy Meyer
Los Angeles Galaxy
Vancouver Whitecaps Select Chris Estridge
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -
Indiana University senior defenders Tommy Meyer and Chris Estridge were the 19th and 21st overall selections in the 2012 Major League Soccer SuperDraft held Thursday in Kansas City.
Meyer was taken in the first round and 19th overall by the Los Angeles Galaxy, while Estridge was taken two spots later by the Vancouver Whitecaps with the second pick in the second round.
"I am extremely happy and excited to be drafted by Vancouver," Estridge said. "It is a great city with incredible fans and a great staff. I can't wait to get to Vancouver and start playing."
"I am excited to be joining the MLS champions and can't wait to start training with the team," Meyer said. "I couldn't have been picked by a better team and organization."
"We are very excited that Chris and Tommy were selected in the 2012 MLS Super Draft," said IU head coach Todd Yeagley. "Tommy will be playing for MLS Cup Champions, LA Galaxy, where he will be joining IU greats Pat Noonan and Chris Klein (now working on the technical staff). This is a great opportunity for Tommy to join a very talented LA team and to learn from an outstanding coaching staff led by Bruce Arena.
"Chris is heading to a fantastic city in Vancouver where he will be joining another IU standout, Lee Nguyen. Chris will have a great opportunity to make an impact with this second-year club. Both Tommy and Chris have worked very hard to earn this opportunity and our entire IU Soccer family is excited to watch them make their jump to the professional ranks."
Meyer and Estridge become the 34th and 35th Indiana players selected in the MLS Draft since the league's inception in 1996. The Hoosiers' last draft selections came in 2011 when Will Bruin was the 11th overall pick by the Houston Dynamo, and Rich Balchan was the 12th overall pick by the Columbus Crew.
All-American Nick Garcia remains the highest-ever IU player selected as the second overall pick in 2000.
Meyer is the 12th first-round pick in school history. He joins Bruin (Houston, 2011), Balchan (Columbus, 2011), Kevin Alston (New England, 2009), John Michael Hayden (Houston, 2007), Danny O'Rourke (Houston, 2005), Drew Moor (FC Dallas, 2005), Pat Noonan (New England, 2003), Garcia (Kansas City, 2000), Aleksy Korol (FC Dallas, 2000), Lazo Alavanja (FC Dallas, 1999), and Chris Klein (Kansas City, 1998) as first-round selections.
Meyer capped off his Indiana career with first-team All-Big Ten honors in 2011. He started all 22 matches as a senior and finished his career as a starter in 79 of 81 matches played. This year he led the team and finished second in the Big Ten in assists with seven, while also anchoring the IU defense to eight shutouts.
"He's a player that has a good profile to be a center back in this league," Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena told LAGalaxy.com. "He has physical size. He's a good header of the ball. A good defender and a decent passer out of the back. Once we get him into our setting we can learn a little bit more and work with him and try to make him better."
A selection to the MLS Best XI second team, Meyer was named to the adidas/IU Credit Union Classic All-Tournament team and was Defensive MVP after leading the Hoosiers to wins over Saint Louis (3-1) and Dayton (6-0). He assisted on both goals in a 2-0 win at Rutgers, earning Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week honors. He also had two assists against No. 11 Louisville and was named to the Top Drawer Soccer and College Soccer News Teams of the Week after Indiana posted a 1-0 win over Ohio State.
As a junior Meyer was a second-team All-Big Ten selection and finished his career with 10 assists and 25 shot attempts from his central defender position.
Meyer joins former Hoosier Pat Noonan with the Galaxy, while former Hoosier and Galaxy player Chris Klein is now the Senior Director of the LA Galaxy Academy Program and Special Projects.
Estridge was named a first-team All-American by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America, an NSCAA All-Great Lakes Region first-team member, and a unanimous first-team All-Big Ten selection in 2011. Starting all 22 matches this past season, Estridge finished with three goals and five assists from his left back position. The speedy Estridge recorded his first goal as a Hoosier in a 6-0 win over Dayton and was named to the adidas/IU Credit Union All-Tournament team. The next weekend he helped the Hoosiers to the Mike Berticelli Memorial Tournament title with wins over Bucknell and Denver, tallying his second goal of the year against the Pioneers and earning tournament Defensive MVP honors.
"In our opinion, Chris Estridge is one of the best right backs in the draft and we're pleased that he was still available for selection," Whitecaps FC head coach Martin Rennie told WhitecapsFC.com. "Chris can play with both feet on either side of the field and he brings a lot to the table. We needed a bit more depth defensively and I really wanted to make sure that we got a defender out of this draft. I'm very pleased that we got Chris."
His second assist of the year game on the game winner at Butler, while he also helped the defense to its seventh shutout of the season in a 2-0 win over Kentucky and had an assist on the second goal. His fifth assist of the year came on the game winner in a 3-0 victory over Old Dominion in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.
Estridge came to Indiana in 2010 after two seasons at Wake Forest. In his first year in the Cream and Crimson he appeared in 20 matches, making 18 starts and tallying one assist.
Estridge will not be the only Hoosier rookie in the Vancouver camp as Lee Nguyen, who had a standout freshman season at Indiana in 2005, was recently selected by the Whitecaps in a supplemental draft. Nguyen has spent the last five seasons plying his trade in professional leagues in Europe and Asia.
Meyer and Estridge join Jacob Peterson (San Jose), O'Rourke (Columbus), Balchan (Columbus), Bruin (Houston), Moor (Colorado), Jay Nolly (Chicago), Noonan (Los Angeles), Alston (New England), Ned Grabavoy (Salt Lake), Nguyen (Vancouver), Eric Alexander (Portland) and Brad Ring (San Jose) as Hoosiers currently in MLS.
INDIANA'S MAJOR LEAGUE SOCCER DRAFT HISTORY
Yuri Lavrinenko, 2000 (3rd round, 32nd pick)
Ryan Mack, 2003 (3rd round, 25th pick)
Brian Plotkin, 2006 (2nd round, 20th pick)
Joel Shanker, 1996 (16th round, 152nd pick)
Jacob Peterson, 2005 (2nd round, 21st pick)
Mike Clark, 1996 (4th round, 31st pick)
Brandon Ward, 1996 (6th round, 51st pick)
Todd Yeagley, 1996 (8th round, 71st pick)
Brandon Ward, 1998 (1st round, 12th pick)*
Jed Zayner, 2005 (2nd round, 13th pick)
Rich Balchan, 2011 (1st round, 12th pick)
Andy Adlard, 2011 (3rd round, 48th pick)*
Steve Keller, 1996 (14th round, 133rd pick)
Lazo Alavanja, 1999 (1st round, 4th pick)
Andrew Parrish, 1999 (third round, 30th pick)
Aleksey Korol, 2000 (1st round, 5th pick)
Drew Moor, 2005 (1st round, 6th pick)
Mike Ambersley, 2006 (4th round, 46th pick)
Eric Alexander, 2010 (3rd round, 44th pick)
T.J. Hannig, 2001 (6th round, 62nd pick)
John Swann, 2003 (5th round, 41st pick)
Caleb Porter, 1998 (3rd round, 27th pick; then known as the San Jose Clash)
Danny O'Rourke, 2005 (1st round, 4th pick; then known as the San Jose Earthquakes)
John Michael Hayden, 2007 (1st round, 13th pick)
Will Bruin, 2011 (1st round, 11th pick)
Kansas City Wizards
Ken Snow, 1996 (16th round, 156th pick)
Chris Klein, 1998 (1st round, 4th pick)
Nick Garcia, 2000 (1st round, 2nd pick)
Ofori Sarkodie, 2010 (4th round, 52nd pick)
Los Angeles Galaxy
Ned Grabavoy, 2004 (2nd round, 14th pick)
Josh Tudela, 2007 (2nd round, 20th pick)
Tommy Meyer, 2012 (1st round, 19th pick)
New England Revolution
Scott Coufal, 1997 (2nd round, 12th pick)
Pat Noonan, 2003 (1st round, 9th pick)
Kevin Alston, 2009 (1st round, 10th pick)
Real Salt Lake
Jay Nolly, 2005 (2nd round, 22nd pick)
San Jose Earthquakes
Brad Ring, 2009 (2nd round, 17th pick)
Lee Nguyen, 2011 (MLS Weighted Lottery)
Chris Estridge, 2012 (2nd round, 21st pick)
* Supplemental Draft