Conn. Two-time Northeast Conference Player of the Year
Graciano Brito (Sao Nicolau, Cape Verde) of the Quinnipiac
University men's soccer team has been invited to participate in the
Adidas Major League Soccer Player Combine. Brito was one of just 65
Division I seniors invited to take part in the five-day combine
from Jan. 9-13 in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. Scouts and management from
all 15 MLS teams will be present assessing talent for the 2009 MLS
SuperDraft on Jan. 15 in St. Louis, Mo.
Of the 58 players selected in last year's MLS SuperDraft, 43 participated in the combine, 12 of whom were picked in the first round. Brito is coming off his second consecutive season as being selected the NEC Player of the Year, becoming just the fifth player in conference history to win the award in back-to-back seasons. The senior forward led the conference in goals (18), goals per game (1.0), points (39) and points per game (2.17), while leading the nation in goals per game and points per game this season.
Brito's four Brine/NEC Player of the Week awards were the most in the conference this year and gave him seven over the course his career at Quinnipiac. Brito's 18th goal of the season set two program Division I single-season records. He now holds the mark for most goals and points, breaking the previous figure held by Everson Maciel in the 2001 season. Earlier in the year, Brito set the program's Division I career record for goals and points. In four years at Quinnipiac, Brito has amassed 40 goals and 92 points.
Joining Brito at the MLS Combine will be eight semifinalists for the 2008 Missouri Athletic Club Hermann Trophy, college soccer's equivalent of the Heisman Trophy. Players will be divided into four teams and compete against one another over three days at Lockhart Stadium.
"This is a tremendous opportunity for Graciano and yet another sign of how far our program has come," said Head Coach Eric Da Costa. "It is great to see the players in our program receiving recognition for being amongst the nation's very best. Graciano has worked very hard for this opportunity. His teammates and coaches are extremely proud of him and we wish him the very best."