College Watching – future FC Dallas Homegrowns?

If you read our work, I’m sure you know that we put a lot of emphasis on the pathway to the pros and tracking FC Dallas Academy kids before and after they leave the Academy.  For those players that have graduated from the Academy and aren’t yet professionals, that means tracking them in college soccer.

Since college soccer has just kicked off a spring partial season – some schools played a partial fall schedule – it seems like a good time to check in on some players.

So here’s a list of ten of the top players I’m tracking in college that could be potential FC Dallas college Homegrown signings down the line. This list is by no means exclusive as I have another 50 plus names written in my notes. This list is just the guys I have at the top.

I will also be skipping players already drafted that have chosen to stay in school like Gio Montes de Oca and Mark Salas (both drafted by FCD out of UNC) and Brandon Terwege (drafted by Houston Dynamo from SMU). Obviously, they may join their clubs after the spring semester.

Ten FCD Potential College Homegrowns

In alphabetical order.

Reed Berry – Oral Roberts (2001?)

A former FCD Youth player (under coach Chris Che) and striker, Berry exploded as a freshman leading Oral Roberts in scoring with 11 goals and 5 assists in 2019 earning the Summit League Newcomer of the Year award.  In his sophomore 2020 season – which is happening now – he’s grabbed 4 goals and 3 assists in 7 games. Roja League: Premier Legends

Michael Collodi – Columbia (2001)

Started 15 of 17 at goalkeeper for Columbia with a 1.65 GAA and a 64.9 save pct in 2019 as a freshman. He’s been doing remote classwork this year and training with North Texas SC full-time. I assume he will return to Columbia this fall as I doubt anyone would pass up a Columbia education to play USL-1. Roja League: Premier Legends

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Premier Legends goalkeeper Michael Collodi intercepts a corner kick in the Roja League match against FC Harrington. (Daniel McCullough, 3rd Degree)

Cristian Escribano – Wake Forest (2002)

A modern attacking right back from the FCD Academy, Escribano had a cup of coffee with NTX before he graduated. He’s started 7 of 8 Wake games this fall and both games this spring.

Escribano
Cristian Escribano. (Courtesy Wake Forest)

Daniel Evans – Kentucky (1999)

Another FCD Academy striker, Evans had some mild success as a freshman mostly coming off the bench with 2 goals in 13 games (just 3 starts) but then broke through in 2019 with 7 goals and 5 assists in 21 starts.  This fall he grabbed 2 goals and 2 assists in 6 games and so far this spring he’s scored 2 more goals with 1 assist in 5. Roja League: Denton Estudiantes

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Danny Evans of Denton Estudiantes on the ball, December 19, 2020. (Christian Oseguera, Denton Diablos)

Malik Henry-Scott – Tulsa (2001)

A recent striker grad from the Academy, I love this kid’s athleticism and body control. He started the first 3 games in his career at Tulsa but has yet to score.

Malik also played for Chris Che in FC Dallas Youth at one point when he was first cut from the Academy. He later rejoined the Academy after rebounding under Coach Che.

Malik Henry-Scott
Conner Lewis (#15 white) of Solar SC defends against Malik Henry-Scott of FC Dallas, September 22, 2019. (Solar SC U19s)

Luis Hernandez – Northern Illinois (2001)

A defensive-minded midfielder from the Academy. Luis started 16 of 17 games played as a freshman in 2019. He’s continued that starting dominance in 2021 starting 3 of the first 4 for the Huskies.

Luis Hernandez. (Courtesy Northern Illinois)

Jalen James – Campbell (2000)

A right winger/striker out of the Academy. Started 5 games in 2018 before being injured but received a medical redshirt. Returned in 2019 making 11 starts in 21 appearances with 3 goals and 2 assists. This spring he’s started all 5 games for the Camels with 4 goals and 1 assist.

Jalen James. (Courtesy Campbell University)

Diego Maynez – Northern Illinois (2002)

A midfielder from the FCD Academy, Maynez has started 4 of 5 games as a freshman with the Huskies notching a goal and an assist.

Diego Maynez. (Courtesy Northern Illinois)

Brayan Padilla – Maryland (2000)

A vitally important creative attacking mid or forward with the FCD Academy, he was injured his freshman year with the Terps and only played in 6 matches off the bench with 1 assist. In 2019 he started 7 or 8 games, scoring 2 goals, before again being injured. Brayan has started 2 or 3 this spring but has yet to notch any points.

Brayan Padilla, 2017 USDA U16 Central Conference Player of the Year.

Holland Rula – Wake Forest (1999)

A left mid or outside back, Rula came off the bench in 19 games as a freshman (with 1 goal) and then jumped up to 9 starts in 20 appearances as a Sophomore.  As a junior, he’s now a lock starter with 9 starts last fall and 2 this spring with 2 assists.

Holland Rula
Holland Rula plays for FC Dallas in the 2018 Dallas Cup. (Doug Fejer, Dallas Cup)

Some Oddities

These guys were on my list but for various reasons, I’m not putting them on this list right now.

Kevin Bonilla – Portland (2001)

You will know this name from his last two seasons with North Texas SC. He’s on the Pilots roster but isn’t playing. Kevin’s a US Youth International. As far as I know, he’s not with NTX this spring. Roja League: FC Harrington.

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Kevin Bonilla drives past Shak Adams during the 1-1 draw between North Texas SC and FC Tucson, September 19, 2020. (Craig Marcho, 3rd Degree)

Cole Guindon – Kentucky (1999)

A left back who mostly played premier at FC Dallas, Guindon broke out as a freshman starting 18 of 21 games at left back in the Cats deep run in 2018. Took a step back in 2019 with 7 starts in 11 games. Unfortunately, he’s medically retired and is no longer playing.

Cole Guindon
Cole Guindon, Kentucky. (Courtesy University of Kentucky)

Julian Hinojosa – North Carolina (2001)

A former US Youth International and FCD left back. Hinojosa started 6 of 13 games as a freshman at UNC. He’s still on the roster in 2020 but hasn’t played. He was here in town playing Roja League this winter. Roja League: Premier Legends

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Estudiantes midfielder Danny Evans avoids the slide tackle from Premier Legends defender Julian Hinojosa in the Roja League match at Texas Women’s University. (Daniel McCullough, 3rd Degree)

Cesar Garcia – SMU (2002)

A player I would have been happy to see sign with North Texas SC after he played 1 minute for Los Torolitos in 2019. He would have been a freshman this year with SMU. Instead – due to Covid, I assume – he took a gap year and stayed with the FCD U19s. Roja League: FC Harrington.

Cesar Garcia.

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