Thirteen of the 38 picks in the 2012 MLS SuperDraft were BIG EAST players. The SuperDraft was held at noon on Jan. 12 in Kansas City, Mo., and featured live on ESPN2 and ESPN3. The total number of BIG EAST players drafted in the SuperDraft more than doubles last year's selections, as six players were chosen, all in the second and third rounds. Louisville had four players drafted, while USF had three and Connecticut and Notre Dame each had two. Marquette and West Virginia each had one player drafted. The 13 selections in the SuperDraft are the most ever for the league, surpassing the eight picks in 2004.
There were seven former BIG EAST players taken in the first round: Louisville's Nick DeLeon (7th overall), was drafted by D.C. United; Connecticut's Andrew Jean-Baptiste (8th overall) was drafted by Portland; Louisville's Austin Berry (9th overall) was drafted by Chicago; Notre Dame's Aaron Maund (12th overall) was drafted by Chicago; Connecticut's Tony Cascio (14th overall) was drafted by Colorado; USF's Dom Dwyer (16th overall) was drafted by Kansas City; and Louisville's Colin Rolfe (18th overall) was drafted by Houston.
In the second round, six former BIG EAST players were selected: Marquette's Calum Mallace (20th overall) was selected by Montreal; USF's Aubrey Perry (26th overall) was selected by Columbus; Notre Dame's Brendan King (27th overall) was selected by Portland; USF's Chris Blais (33rd overall) was selected by San Jose; West Virginia's Raymon Gaddis (35th overall) was selected by Philadelphia; and Louisville's Kenney Walker (38th overall) was selected by Los Angeles.
Nick DeLeon, a two-year starter for the Cardinals, earned All-Great Lakes Region honors for the second straight year in 2012. He started every game since joining Louisville in 2010. In 2011, he ranked second on the team in scoring with six goals and six assists for 18 points. He was named a First Team All-BIG EAST selection for the second straight year. He was also the only Cardinal selected to BIG EAST All-Tournament team. He finished the year with two gamewinners, including the game-winning goal in overtime against Bradley in the NCAA Tournament. DeLeon finished his two-year career at Louisville with 14 goals and nine assists for 37 points.
Andrew Jean-Baptiste left UConn after a sophomore season in which he was named All-BIG EAST First Team and the 2011 BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Year. As a freshman, Jean-Baptiste earned a spot on the All-BIG EAST Rookie Team and was named a Soccer America First Team Freshman All-American. Baptiste played every minute of every game and anchored a Connecticut defense that allowed just 10 goals in 25 games. The Huskies set a program record with 16 shutouts this season. Baptiste also found his way onto the scoresheet with two goals and an assist, notching the game-tying goal at Rutgers in the BIG EAST Tournament as UConn went on to win 3-1.
Austin Berry earned NSCAA All-American honors and All-Great Lakes Region honors for the second consecutive season. He helped anchor the Cardinal defense to 11 shutouts in 2011 and 37 shutouts in his career at Louisville. He finished his senior year with a goal and an assist for four points. He was also named a First Team All-BIG EAST selection the last two seasons. He finished his career with 11 goals and five assists for 27 points.
Aaron Maund, a Notre Dame team captain, was a First Team All-BIG EAST selection in 2011. He played every possible minute during the 2011 campaign and registered two assists in addition to helping the Irish post six shutouts. Maund was a starter in all 77 matches in which he played during his Fighting Irish career and was a three-time All-BIG EAST performer and earned All-Region honors twice. Maund accumulated nine points on two goals and five assists during his stellar four-year career.
Tony Cascio was named a 2010 NSCAA First Team All-American and a semifinalist for the M.A.C. Hermann Trophy. Cascio led UConn to the NCAA Quarterfinals as a senior, scoring goals in his last two games in Storrs. Cascio entered the 2011 season as a Preseason All-American, a member of the M.A.C. Hermann Trophy Watch List and the BIG EAST Preseason Offensive Player of the Year. He finished his final season in Storrs with 18 points on five goals and eight assists. Cascio finished his career with 73 points on 24 goals and 25 assists. He was named to the 2011 All-BIG EAST Second Team as a senior after earning a spot on the All-BIG EAST First Team as a sophomore and junior.
Dom Dwyer led the BIG EAST in goals (16) in 2011. He earned All-American status from the NCAA and College Soccer News. He also was a semifinalist for the M.A.C. Hermann Trophy Award, given to the top men's soccer player in the nation each year, after helping USF win the Big East Red Division title and make it to the Elite Eight for the third time.
Colin Rolfe earned First Team All-Great Lakes Region honors for the third consecutive season. He led the Cardinals in scoring for the third straight season with 28 points. He also led the team in assists and goals in his final season with a career-best 10 assists and nine goals. The senior forward recorded his first career hat trick with three goals against Providence in the BIG EAST Tournament. He earned national player of the week honors from all three publications. He was the only player in the nation to dish out three assists in two games (Butler and Maryland) this season. Rolfe finished his career ranked third in career points and goals second in career assists. He was a Hermann Trophy Finalist in his junior year and was a two-time first team NSCAA All-American.
Calum Mallace, who helped the Golden Eagles win their first BIG EAST Conference Blue Division championship this past fall, finished his Marquette career with 39 points on 13 goals and 13 assists. Eight of his 13 career goals were game winners. He was also a back-to-back All-BIG EAST selection while being named Second Team All-America in 2011 by College Soccer News.
Aubrey Perry was a vital piece to the Bulls' back line this year, as well as in previous years. He became USF's all-time leader in games played and games started after starting every contest for the past two seasons. Perry was selected to the All-BIG EAST Third Team.
Brendan King played in all 18 matches this season for the Fighting Irish and tallied four points on one goal and two assists. For his career, King played in 81 games, including 39 starts, and notched 26 points on six goals and 14 assists. King will join his former Notre Dame teammate Bright Dike on the Portland roster.
Chris Blais started every game in goal for USF in 2011, posting a 13-4-4 record. He recorded eight shutouts between the posts for the Bulls. Blais had a 0.81 goals-against average.
Raymon Gaddis played in 73 career games and led the Mountaineers to two NCAA Tournament second-round appearances. Gaddis logged 6,687 minutes in his career and finished with six assists. Gaddis was a two-time MAC Hermann Trophy Watch list member, third team All-American in 2010, first team NSCAA all-Northeast in 2009, two-time second team all-BIG EAST, two-time All-BIG EAST Preseason selection and a 2011 CollegeSoccerNews Second Team Preseason All-American.
Kenney Walker finished 2011 with 16 points and five goals. This season he scored three game-winning goals against Ohio State, Indiana, and Cincinnati. He earned Second Team All-BIG EAST honors and finished his Louisville career with 19 assists, ranking him fourth on the all-time list.
The 2012 MLS Supplemental Draft will be held in New York, N.Y., on Jan. 17.