#25 Louisville Men's Soccer 2013 Preview

Louisville Cardinals

Overall Rank: #25
Conference Rank: #2 American
#25 Louisville Men's Soccer 2013 Preview
Louisville Team Page


A Big East Red Division title, a run to the final eight of the NCAA Tournament and the first overall pick in the MLS SuperDraft is going to be a tough act to follow. Louisville has some serious reloading to do for their one season in the American Athletic Conference before they head off to the ACC. Coach Ken Lolla will not need much time to get his new faces together into cohesive unit, but it remains to be seen if the talent and depth is truly there.  

2012 Record: 14-6-1, 7-1-0
2012 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Ken Lolla

Coach Lolla has brought in a handful of impact transfers and another superb recruiting class. Louie Berra, Jonathan Brown, Mitch Lurie, Derek McCaffrey, Nolan Moore and Jimmy Ockford all have collegiate experience and they will need to step in right away and fill a few holes all over the pitch. Defender Andrew Brody and midfielders Romilio Hernandez and Jeremy DeGraffenriedt highlight the Cardinal’s 2013 recruiting class. That is a lot of new faces, but it is a lot of talent too. They should be able to effectively fill the gaps around the returning talent led by midfielders Will Vitalis and Marlon Hairston. Vitalis netted four goals and dished out a team high seven assists. Hairston managed to earn 18 starts as a freshman and that is extremely impressive considering the talent and experience that was around him last season. And he made things happen on the field too. Hairston is ready for a breakout season. Ade Akinsanya may not put up big numbers, but the steady senior will likely play an important part in the Louisville midfield this season. Striker Zack Foxhoven usually came off of the bench in 2012 and five times he found the back of the net. The defense returns 6-0 back Daniel Keller, promising sophomore Jerry Ramirez and keeper Mike Mauro.

But, for a while at least, this season will be about who is not on the field for Louisville. Defensive midfielder Andrew Farrell was the first choice in the draft and both Greg Cochrane and Paolo DelPiccolo were selected in the second round. Farrell was the best defensive mid in college soccer. Cochran netted six goals and has always been a very good setup man from the back line. DelPiccolo had six assists during his senior season. That alone is a big blow to the Cardinals defense and playmaking midfield, but there is a lot more. Dylan Mares transferred to Indiana after leading the team with seven goals and adding six assists. Ryan Smith, Brock Granger and Isaiah Trejo were also regular starters and Buck Tufty and Alex Obbey were key contributors off of the bench.

Final Projection:
Obviously there are a ton of questions heading into the 2013 season. Louisville has all of the potential answers waiting to get their chance. A fourth trip to the quarterfinals of the NCAA Tournament looks like a longshot right now, yet do not be surprised at all if by November Coach Lolla has this group playing some of the best soccer in the country.

Projected Postseason: NCAA

Returning Leaders:
Goals: Zach Foxhoven, Senior, F, 5
Assists: Will Vitalis, Junior, M, 7
Shots: Will Vitalis, Junior, M, 35
Saves: Mike Mauro, Senior, GK, 43

Madness 2014 MLS Draft Rankings:
#27 Will Vitalis

Madness 2013 Men’s Soccer Recruit Rankings:
#51 Romilio Hernandez
#53 Andrew Brody
#94 Jeremy DeGraffenreidt


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