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E Pluribus Loonum Select Brad Dunwell in SBN MLS Mock Draft

The Loons pick up a defensive midfielder in a totally non-binding draft conducted by SB Nation site writers

NCAA Soccer: Men’s College Cup-Stanford vs Wake Forest
Brad Dunwell (#12) battles for a ball against Stanford’s Derek Waldeck in a December 2016 game. Dunwell was E Pluribus Loonum’s pick in the SB Nation Mock SuperDraft.
Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Minnesota United fans should thank me: I got them a #6 at #7.

Representatives from (almost) every SB Nation MLS site conducted a mock draft of Friday’s MLS SuperDraft on Sunday. With the seventh pick, your intrepid Loons representative picked Wake Forest midfielder Brad Dunwell. A four-year starter for the Demon Deacons, Dunwell entered the combine as the #2 player on TopDrawerSoccer.com’s Big Board, with the site also predicting in its second crack at a Mock Draft that he’d go to the Loons. Here’s the draft order according to SBN:

1. CIN – Tajon Buchanon

2. SJ – Frankie Amaya

3. ORL – Callum Montgomery

4. DAL – Siad Haji

5. CHI – Akeem Ward

6. TOR – Dayne St. Clair

7. MIN – Brad Dunwell

8. HOU – Griffin Dorsey

9. NE – Sergio Rivas

10. DAL – John Nelson

11. NE – Marcello Borges

12. LA – Prosper Figbe

13. PHI – JJ Williams

14. DC – Logan Gdula

15. COL – Andre Shinyashiki

16. LAFC – Wouter Verstraaten

17. RSL – DeJuan Jones

18. CLB – Ryan Sierakowski

19. NYC – Santiago Patiño

20. SEA – Hassani Dotson

21. SKC – Camden Riley

22. RBNY – Peter-Lee Vassell

23. POR – Abdi Mohamed

24. ATL – Rece Buckmaster

A few bullet points:

  • Following the tradition of this being mainly a thought exercise, fake trades were not included in the results. However, in poking around, there seems to have been interest by The Bent Musket to trade out of either of New England’s picks at #9 or #11, with similar thoughts about Dallas’s pick at #10.
  • Dunwell did not do well as a lone defensive midfielder in Team Copa’s 4-1 loss to Nemeziz, and concerns that he wouldn’t place highly in the athleticism tests came to fruition. With that being said, I’m still high on his ball-winning ability and his confidence passing with the ball at his feet. Some players don’t perform well in this type of setting, but end up being stars.
  • Among the players that shot up the charts based on their combine performances: UVA center back Prosper Figbe went from TDS’s 43rd pick to get picked 12th by LAG Confidential after strong performances in the 30-meter dash and the vertical jump, as well as doing well for Nemeziz against Team Copa; DeJuan Jones had a similar move up draft boards, with the Michigan State forward topping the 30-meter time list and scoring for Nemeziz; while his team lost their opening combine match, Once A Metro really liked what they saw from Caribbean Combine winner Peter-Lee Vassell, a 20-year old Jamaican midfielder from Harbour View FC.
  • The Loons will have their pick of a number of back-of-1st round talent when they pick #31. Assuming that we were doing a two-round draft, I ranked all 72 players present at the combine. On my board, six players higher than 24th are still available, headlined by Maryland’s midfielder/captain Amar Sejdic and Michigan State goalkeeper Jimmy Hague. If Hague is off the board, I’d predict the Loons go for Fordham’s Rashid Nuhu with their second-round pick; if they go with a best-available pick there, I could see them trying to buy their way into the early part of the 3rd round if Nuhu, UNC’s James Pyle, or Akron’s Ben Lundt are still available.