2014 MLS SuperDraft: Colorado Rapids select Grant Van De Casteele with the 19th pick

Notre Dame defender is Colorado's second pick in the first round following trade

Grant van de Casteele

Photo Credit: 
USA Today Sports Images

It worked in 2013, so why not try it again.

With the club's second pick in the first round of the 2014 MLS SuperDraft - 19th overall - the Colorado Rapids selected University of Notre Dame defender Grant Van De Casteele.

Last year, Colorado selected Van De Casteele's Notre Dame teammate Dillon Powers with the second pick in the first round (11th overall). Like Powers, Van De Casteele is also from Plano, Texas. In fact, the two were not only teammates at Notre Dame, but also at youth soccer club, Andromeda SC, in Texas.

Van De Casteel returned to Notre Dame for a fifth season in 2013 and anchored a defense that allowed 18 goals and recorded 10 shutouts en route to winning the first NCAA title in the program's history. After started all 24 games, he was name to the All-ACC third team and the College Cup Best XI. As a junior he was named Big East Male Scholar-Athlete of the Year, co-recipient of the team's Knute Rockne Scholar-Athlete Award, and BIG EAST Academic All-Star. He started all 84 games in his college career and added four goals.

On his bio on MLSsoccer.com, he's described as: "a dual-threat right centerback...a ball-magnet on the backline and a threat pushing into the attack...has good feet for his size, able to both get forward at need and to combine with players up the field. Questions remain about his pace, but in the estimation of one coach, Van De Casteele moves "as quick as he needs to be," and his feel for the game means he rarely finds himself in positions where he needs to chase down attackers.

Colorado had acquired the 19th overall selection from New England, as well as the Revolution's 12th pick, in exchange for the Rapids' 11th selection. With the 12th pick Colorado selected Louisville midfielder Marlon Hairston.

Position: Defender
College: Notre Dame
Height: 6-2
Weight: 165
Date of Birth: May 10, 1991
Hometown: Plano, Texas
Citizenship: USA