Bears Currently Boast 11 Pro Soccer Players

April 16, 2009

BERKELEY - The California men's soccer program has proven in the past few years to be one of the NCAA's leading programs in producing players at the professional level. The Golden Bears currently have eight players in Major League Soccer (MLS), two players in the United Soccer League (USL-1) and one player in Europe. In addition, Cal has had 12 players in the MLS in the past two seasons, putting them near the top among all the NCAA men's soccer programs.

The eight former Cal players who are now playing in the MLS are:

Calen Carr - Chicago Fire
Stefan Frei - Toronto FC
Andrew Jacobson - D.C. United
Eric Kronberg - Kansas City Wizards
Steve Purdy - FC Dallas
Luke Sassano - New York Red Bulls
Josh Saunders - Los Angeles Galaxy
Tyson Wahl - Seattle Sounders FC

Of these eight players, five of them have already started at least one game this season. Two of the three players who have not started a game yet this season, Calen Carr and Eric Kronberg, began the campaign on the disabled list.

Justin Myers and Troy Roberts are currently playing in the USL-1, Myers for the Puerto Rico Islanders and Roberts for the Cleveland City Stars. Leo Krupnik is the lone former Cal student-athlete who is playing overseas. Krupnik returned this season to Maccabi Haifa of the Israeli Premier League, which is currently in first place with 52 points.

Cal had four of its former players retire at the end of last season: Mike Munoz, Nick Hatzke and Eric Ebert of the MLS and Noah Merl of the USL-1.

The Bears won the Pac-10 Championship in 2006 and 2007. In 2008, they advanced to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA College Cup, their eighth consecutive appearance in the tournament.

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