Join Now | 
HomeAboutContact UsPrivacy & SecurityAdvertise
Soccer America DailySoccer World DailySpecial EditionAround The NetSoccer Business InsiderCollege Soccer ReporterYouth Soccer ReporterSoccer on TVSoccer America ClassifiedsGame Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalkSoccer America ConfidentialYouth Soccer InsiderWorld Cup Watch
RSS FeedsArchivesManage SubscriptionsSubscribe
Order Current IssueSubscribeManage My SubscriptionRenew My SubscriptionGift Subscription
My AccountJoin Now
Tournament CalendarCamps & AcademiesSoccer GlossaryClassifieds
Patrick Nyarko, the accidental collegian
by Paul Kennedy, December 7th, 2007 8:15AM



Two years ago, college soccer fans were only starting to get a glimpse of Virginia Tech's Patrick Nyarko.

The Ghanaian freshman terrorized opponents but few outside the ACC heard of him.

"He's the reason we're in every game," said Hokie coach Oliver Weiss after a 2-1 Tech win at Virginia in which Nyarko scored both goals. "He's a special kid and a special player."

Last year, Nyarko doubled his output from eight to 16 goals, but still remained a secret.

This year, with an influx of  experienced players from England and Germany, Nyarko hasn't had to carry the Hokies, but his influence has grown.

Nyarko's winning goal against Old Dominion last weekend was only his sixth of the season but it moved the Hokies into the quarterfinals for the first time.

Finally, everyone is learning what Hokie fans have known for three seasons. Nyarko just might be the most talented player in college soccer.

But he ended up at Virginia Tech by accident.

Nyarko grew up speaking Twi in Kumasi, the capital of the Ashanti region, and learned English by watching ESPN and CNN on television.

Weiss had some soccer contacts in Ghana, and he stumbled upon Nyarko, whose father wanted him to concentrate on his studies and refused to let him play soccer in school.

Soccer and education were a hard sell when Weiss came calling, but Nyarko's father, a banker, relented after hearing of Tech's academics.

"If education wasn't involved, that conversation would have lasted maybe a minute," Patrick Nyarko told the Richmond Times-Dispatch. "My father would just say 'No.'"

Nyarko, a psychology major, and Joshua Boateng, another Ghanaian who has since transferred to Liberty, marveled at the academic facilities available to students when they arrived in Blacksburg in 2005.

Nyarko's father was put at ease.

Year  GP-GS G-A-P
2005  15-12    8-6-22
2006  20-17  16-8-40
2007  20-17  6-10-22

No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now



Recent College Soccer Reporter
Video Pick: Virginia's Foss dials long distance    
Virginia players know how to score goals. Last week, Derrick Etienne went through half of the ...
U.S. Merchant Marine's Smolens earns 300th win    
U.S. Merchant Marine Academy men's coach Michael Smolens earned his 300th career victory when the Mariners ...
Wake Forest is first in opening Men's Soccer RPI    
Wake Forest is No. 1 in the NCAA's first Rating Percentage Index (RPI) of the 2015 ...
POTW: Division III star selected for second straight week     
Caitlin Golden of Division III Penn State Berks picked up her second consecutive NSCAA College Player ...
Soccer America Men's Top 25    
There is no change at the top of the weekly Soccer America Men's Top 25 rankings ...
Soccer America Women's Top 25    
North Carolina (10-0-1) moved into first place in the Soccer America Women's Top 25 rankings. The ...
Unbeatens: UNC tops ACC, Cornell's shutout streak ends    
No. 2 North Carolina (10-0-1) and Cornell (8-0-2) remained the only unbeaten women's teams in the ...
Conference Watch: South Carolina takes charge in SEC    
South Carolina moved into first place in the SEC when it rallied to beat defending champion ...
Men's Week 5: Three things we learned this weekend    
A coaching change has not slowed down Wake Forest, which has been led by Jon Bakero ...
Conference Watch: Pac-12 women's race is wide open    
The Pac-12, one of three conferences that decides its conference champion based on the regular-season standings ...
>> College Soccer Reporter Archives