The San Jose Earthquakes brain trust arrived in Baltimore for the 2016 MLS SuperDraft with one goal in mind: Find the best available players that would also allow them to build depth on their roster.
Selecting at number eight in the first round meant that the Quakes would likely miss out on the few consensus blue-chip players available in the draft, so they refocused their efforts on looking for an addition that would shore up a key position without adding uncertainty to their already complex salary budget situation.
And so, to the surprise of many, the Earthquakes made Clemson University goalkeeper Andrew Tarbell their selection at #8 overall, grabbing the best 'keeper in the draft and a player that offers salary-cap flexibility with his Generation Adidas status.
"We thought Andrew was the best goalkeeper available and we are happy to bring him to San Jose," said general manager John Doyle in a club statement. "We have an excellent number one and two in David Bingham and Bryan Meredith. Now we have Andrew to add to the competition at that position."
The 22-year-old senior shot-stopper was named to the 2015 NSCAA All-America Second Team and All-ACC First Team as he led Clemson to a runner-up finish in the NCAA College Cup championship. His 22 goals allowed in 24 games this past season followed up a junior year when he let in only 15 goals in 17 appearances. In his four years at Clemson, Tarbell played in 56 games and allowed a total of 53 goals. He is currently in the U.S. U-23 men's national team pool.
In the second round of the draft, the Earthquakes were pleased to see that Notre Dame midfielder Patrick Hodan was available, so they selected him with the #28 overall pick. Hodan was a MAC Hermann Trophy semifinalist in his junior year, as well as the ACC Offensive Player of the Year, after scoring 9 goals and adding 3 assists in 21 games played. By many accounts, Hodan would have been a top-ten selection in last year's MLS SuperDraft, but he elected to stay in school for his senior year. His numbers dropped in 2015 to 3 goals scored and 6 assists recorded, and his draft stock dropped accordingly.
"Patrick had a good college career at a very good school so he has a good pedigree," said Doyle. "He has goals in him -- we've seen that at the college level. We're looking forward to seeing what both Andrew and Patrick can do."
Hodan, 22 years old, finished his career at Notre Dame with 29 goals and 19 assists in 87 total appearances, so it is evident that the attacking midfielder had the chops to be successful at the college level. He will arrive in San Jose for the start of the Earthquakes preseason training camp not under contract, but he will have the opportunity to compete for a spot on the roster ahead of the March roster compliance date.
Transaction: San Jose Earthquakes (MLS) - San Jose Earthquakes select GK Andrew Tarbell in the first round (eighth overall) and M Patrick Hodan in the second round (28th overall) of the MLS SuperDraft.
Weight: 194 lbs.
Born: Oct. 7, 1993 in Mandeville, LA
Hometown: Mandeville, LA
Weight: 155 lbs.
Born: Oct. 19, 1993 in Brookfield, WI
Hometown: Brookfield, WI
College: Notre Dame