The USL PRO is holding its combine this Thursday through Sunday at the IMG Academies in Bradenton, Fla. And among the players who will be evaluated, there are eight U.S. Soccer Development Academy alumni trying to impress those on hand to make a potential move to the professional ranks.
The following Academy alumni will be on hand: J.J. Bilyeu (St. Louis Gallagher Missouri, former Missouri S&T player), Drew Russell (Crossfire Premier, former Yavapai College midfielder), Daniel Villegas (Kendall FC), Mark Lavery (Concorde Fire, Oglethorpe University), Adrian Avila (Nomads), Juan Jose Nino (Texas Rush), Thomas Garner (CASL) and Travis Wall (Crew Soccer Academy, Ohio Wesleyan University).
Several players just wrapped up their 2011 senior seasons. Wall was the offensive force for Ohio Wesleyan, leading the team in goals (19), assists (15) and points (53). Lavery started in 20 games for Oglethorpe, tallying six goals and four assists. And Nino played in 16 games off the bench for Liberty, contributing a game-winning goal for the Flames.
The USL Combine participants will be divided among six teams, and each squad will play in three matches during the event.