Kekoa
SMU Athletics

FCD strengthen SMU ties with Supplemental picks

FRISCO, Texas — Not even five days after getting three players they wanted in the 2011 MLS SuperDraft, FC Dallas were again adding pieces to their roster as they approach the start of preseason.

On Tuesday, the reigning Western Conference champions had five picks in the 2011 MLS Supplemental Draft and came away with a mixed bag. With their first of three first-round selections, FCD took a defender, Alexis Pradie from Embry-Riddle. They then added midfielders Brayan Martinez of Seton Hall and Paul "Bemi" Ogunyemi, who most recently played for Portland's U-23 team, to round out the first round.

The club went local with their other two picks, selecting players from neighboring SMU: goalkeeper Craig Hill and midfielder Kekoa Osorio (pictured above), two members of a 2010 Mustangs team that came within one game of reaching the NCAA College Cup before losing to North Carolina on penalty kicks.

The FC Dallas-SMU connection runs deep. Dallas head coach Schellas Hyndman led SMU from 1984-2008, and FCD players Ugo Ihemelu, Daniel Hernandez and Bruno Guarda both played under him there — as did this year's draftees Hill and Osorio.

“Schellas does know about [Hill and Osorio] and is very familiar with them,” FCD technical director Barry Gorman told MLSsoccer.com. “He feels comfortable with them. We’ve had a chance to watch them extensively this past fall.”

Overall, this year's draft class presents FCD with some interesting possibilities as they enter preseason camp, which begins in about two weeks.

“I think it’s an interesting collection, and I think it’s one that has some promise and some potential, but time will tell,” Gorman said.

Last week was Gorman's first experience with the SuperDraft after being hired last spring to aide his longtime friend Hyndman. But just like last week’s proceedings, the Dallas technical director enjoyed the process surrounding the Supplemental Draft and said he sees value in having a second mini-draft less than a week after the main event.

“I think it gives clubs and the staff a chance to sort of regroup and then to look a little bit more in depth,” Gorman said. “It’s not a reactionary type thing but it’s a chance to do a little bit more homework — to get ducks in line to see what you really need and re-evaluate after the SuperDraft."

Think you know the game? Test your powers of prediction with MLSsoccer.com's new fantasy game, Pro Soccer Picks. Play NOW!