With the 37th pick in the 2013 Superdraft, the Dynamo selected Georgetown left back Jimmy Nealis. A member of the second team All-Northeast player, he was a big part of Georgetown's run to the College Cup this year, converting the final kick in the shootout victory over Maryland that advanced them to the final (where they lost out to national champion Indiana). Thought to be perhaps the best left back in the draft, a less than stellar combine performance meant that he tumbled. A defender touted as perhaps a first round pick instead slips to the Dynamo with the penultimate pick of the day.
As a left back, Nealis fills pehaps the Dynamo's biggest need: depth behind Corey Ashe. With the prospect of fifty matches this season, there was no way that Ashe was going to able to get through the season without backup. I'm not sure if the Dynamo are done here, but even if they add another veteran left back, Nealis will theoretically be able to see time in the reserve league when not pressed into duty for the group stages of the 2013-2014 CONCACAF Champions League or the US Open Cup.
During his college career, Nealis notched two goals and fifteen assists while playing in more than 80 matches over his four years at Georgetown. It's much too early for us to tell one way or another, but many are already commenting that Nealis at 37 will turn out to be a huge steal. Dynamo fans can only hope that this is indeed the case.
Here's a quick look at Nealis and what he's capable of doing. Enjoy.
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