Since it is almost time for the 2015 MLS Draft, the SBNation MLS sites held a mock draft over the weekend and posted the results Monday. As always, we wanted to take the time to discuss who we took and explain our reasons.
It is incredibly hard to accurately predict who will be taken past the first couple picks in most drafts. Even when there is a consensus on the top several players, all it takes is one team to go rogue and reach for a player out of the expected order or a trade to throw the draft board into chaos. Now try this with a bunch of bloggers/reporters over social media.
Sporting KC needs
First we had to take a look at needs. Last season fell apart at the end for several reasons, the transfer of Rosell, Besler and Zusi at the World Cup and the resulting fatigue and injuries. Injuries everywhere but the biggest trauma ward was on defense. Part of that was because Rosell left, Olum had to fill in at d-mid and the resulting cascade of injuries followed.
Claros never quite became the d-mid answer when he did arrive but between less than stellar team play and a suspension, he may not have time. With the big d-mid signing failing his physical added onto the Claros uncertainty, picking up a good defensive mid was at the top of the list along with more defensive depth.
Vermes system has required a good d-mid to counter balance the box-to-box and attacking mids so that is our first priority if one is available. Next is defensive depth and truly best available balanced equally in importance.
When you think of college draft eligible defensive midfielders, one comes to mind very easily. In fact he was my first choice unless we could move up to the very top of the board but the rules for this exercise was no trades, so we patiently waited for the opportunity to select:
With the tenth overall pick, The Blue Testament selects for Sporting Kansas City, Nick Besler from the University of Notre Dame.
As mentioned already, Kansas City can use some depth at d-mid and this local Kansas City product is a natural fit. The younger brother of team captain Matt Besler, Nick will be driven to excel and step out of his brothers shadow all while having the best example of how to succeed as a pro right in his own family. His stock has been steadily rising at the combine and personal observation has shown him to be worthy of our highest pick.
With the twelfth overall pick, The Blue Testament selects for Sporting Kansas City, Otis Earle from UC Riverside.
Several draft predictors and mock drafts had Earle going well before this pick. He is a left back that can also get forward and could even be used up top for a spell. With all the minutes Seth Sinovic played the last couple of seasons a good backup is crucial.
With the twentieth overall pick, The Blue Testament selects for Sporting Kansas City Andy Craven from the University of North Carolina
While not in our core area of need at defense, Craven looked like a good pickup this low. Sporting KC does not have a lot of forwards on the roster either and this Hermann trophy runner-up can play any of the three forward spots. He has a good scoring touch that enabled him to be tied for the lead in Division I scoring and is reported to have the work rate that Vermes demands.
With the thirtieth overall pick, The Blue Testament selects for Sporting Kansas City Luke Mishu from the University of Notre Dame.
With Myers coming back from injury, an unknown situation with Juliao returning and Ellis still not re-signed some depth at right back could save Sporting KC from having another forward play there. Luke Mishu is a very good option and provides one more Notre Dame connection where he was their captain.
How did we do? Would you be happy with this draft?