Four players from non-Division I schools were taken in the 2009 MLS SuperDraft, including two in the first round: Lynn's Jean Alexandre (Real Salt Lake) and Tampa's Ryan Maxwell (New England). Only three players from small colleges or JCs had previously been taken in the first round of the first 13 MLS drafts.
JEAN ALEXANDRE (Lynn)
12. Real Salt Lake. The midfielder starred at Delray Beach's Atlantic High before becoming the first Haitian to play for Florida D2 power Lynn.
The explosive Alexandre, a late addition to the adidas Combine in nearby Ft. Lauderdale, had 11 goals in his first three seasons with the Fighting Knights before being moved from midfield to the frontline, where he more than doubled his career output with 23 goals and seven assists for 53 points to the nation in points per game.
"I'm extremely grateful for this opportunity to play in the MLS," said Alexandre. "I've had a tremendous four years at Lynn and am looking forward to bettering myself at the next level."
RYAN MAXWELL (Tampa)
15. New England Revolution. The Jamaican midfielder first came to the United States to play for JC power San Jacinto in Texas and then moved to the University of Tampa.
"When he came on his official visit, he said he wanted to become a professional soccer player," Tampa coach Adrian Bush told the Tampa Tribune. "He's a kid that hasn't come from much. He had to go a long route to get to the United States. He's a great kid, and he's got a lot of fire on the field. For him to make it, if he gets drafted, it would be amazing for him."
He scored 10 goals and added five assists for the Spartans, who advanced to the 2008 NCAA Division II final four in Tampa.
JARED KARKAS (Azusa Pacific)
31. Seattle Sounders FC. The left back from Upland, Calif., started for four seasons for the Cougars. He was the only player to start all 22 games during APU's 2007 run to the NAIA championship.
ROSS SCHUNK (Redlands)
47. Colorado Rapids. Schunk, who played under former Los Angeles Galaxy coach Ralph Perez at Redlands, is the Bulldogs' all-time leading scorer with 63 goals and 139 points.
The Portland, Ore., product was the only player selected from a Division III program to compete at the Combine.