With National Signing Day 2017 just around the corner, FCDallas.com will be taking a look at just a few of the 50+ FCD Youth players committing to colleges around the country
FRISCO - For Addison McCain, there has only been one club that she calls home.
McCain – better known as Addie – has played for FC Dallas for the past eleven seasons under Matt Grubb, growing from an unknown local talent to U.S. U-18 Women’s National Team call-up to, now, Aggie.
The midfielder is set to start the next chapter in her career this fall at Texas A&M University, one of the top women’s programs in the nation. She’s so ready to get started, in fact, that McCain is already in College Station – beginning her first semester of college this week after graduated early from Wylie East High School.
“I think it's crazy when you can stick with one coach and one club all through your years,” she said by phone after her first day of classes this week. “You get adjusted, you can get a feel for what the coaches are like and how they coach and I think it makes a total difference.”
And it was mere fate how she ended up in Frisco at the age of 7. Playing indoor soccer at the time, a friend’s father knew Grubb and suggested that McCain come play for him at FC Dallas, she said. The rest is history.
“When she first came to us she was special in the sense that she understood the game - she got it. She wasn't necessarily the most coordinated or skillful right away, but you could see from the way that she attacked everything that she was going to be successful,” Grubb said of his longest-tenured player. “She was always flying under the radar for a while and then, all of the sudden, she was on the scene. At 15, 16, 17 [years old], everyone started seeing what I had seen all along.”
What everyone else started to see was McCain making a name for herself on the field.
Having played for FCD’s ECNL teams – the highest-level youth teams on the Girls’ side – for six seasons and playing up an age group for most of her time, she left an impact on every team she played on. Playing up with the ’98 birth year group at the U-14 level several years ago, her club won their conference. At the start of next season, six of the team’s starters had left the club, according to Grubb. McCain led the team to its best-ever finish as the No. 3 team in the nation losing just two games all year – the season opener and the National Semifinal to the eventual National Champion.
She dropped down to play with her own age group last season, the ’99 birth year girls, and led that team to its best finish at No. 8 in the country. That same team this season went 13-1-0 over the first half with McCain before leaving for her next challenge. She’ll remain eligible to return for the end of the season and playoffs this summer after her first semester at A&M.
McCain also spent time with the club’s WPSL team last season and is set to return to the highest-level women’s team at FCD later this year.
“He just gave me a chance when I was younger, and I've seen him change so many players and change myself [for the better],” McCain said of her decade-long mentor. “I remember for the longest time Matt telling us he was going to coach us until we go to college, and the funny part is I'm the only one that's still here. That's the coolest part to me looking back at it and he's been such a great coach and even better person to be around.”
Outside of club soccer, it’s been much of the same for McCain, too. In April 2015, she led Wylie East to the young school’s first-ever State Championship and was named the tournament MVP – as a sophomore. In the 2016 high school season she scored a modest 19 goals. She’ll forego her upcoming senior season.
“I think she's going to be an immediate-impact player,” he said of McCain’s freshman season this fall. “I expect that she plays right away in the A&M program – despite it being one of the top programs and elite programs in the country. I think she's ready.”
It’s also a little bitter-sweet to be leaving the one club she’s ever known.
“They [the FC Dallas coaches] have just been incredible,” McCain said. “They've been a blessing to me and my family as well, and I just feel like have been blessed by the club and the people I've been surrounded by.”