The Flint City Bucks kept their streak alive. FCB is the only club in history to have at least one player signed or drafted in every Major League Soccer (MLS) SuperDraft to date. The MLS SuperDraft is a four round exercise where the very best NCAA players are selected.
On Thursday, MLS held the first two rounds of the SuperDraft, where three Bucks defensive specialists heard their names called.
Defender Nyal Higgins (Ajax, Ontario / Syracuse) spent parts of two seasons with the Bucks in 2017 and 2018 while playing at Oakland University. The Canadian U20 defender transferred to Syracuse for his senior season and was drafted in the first round with the 19th overall pick by his native Toronto FC.
Defender Patrick Nielsen (Denmark / MSU) spent parts of two seasons with the Bucks as well in 2018 and 2019 before being sidelined for most of this past season with a leg injury. Nielsen was a huge part of Michigan State’s run to the College Cup in 2018 and he was selected with the 23rd pick in the first round by Atlanta United FC.
Center back Michael Wetungu (Rochester Hills, MI / MSU) played two seasons for the Bucks in 2017 and 2019 after also being coached as an academy player by Bucks former head coach, Demir Muftari. Wetungu teamed up with Nielsen both in Flint and East Lansing as a dynamic defensive duo. Wetungu was drafted with the 20th pick of the second round (46th overall) by Real Salt Lake.
Including these three drafted players, the Bucks have sent a total of 87 former players to MLS since 1999. Additional FCB players will be accepting invites to a variety of MLS preseason training camps in the coming weeks.
More than 200 Bucks players have signed professional contracts in over a dozen countries around the world after they completed their USL2 seasons in Michigan.
The Bucks are recognized as the most successful amateur team in US Soccer history, winning an unmatched twelve national titles in the team’s first 24 seasons, including their record third USASA Hank Steinbrecher Cup and fourth USL League Two title this past summer.
The Bucks are gearing up for their second season at Kettering University’s historic Atwood Stadium beginning in May.
BUCKS TO HOST 12TH ANNUAL COLLEGE CHALLENGE ON APRIL 4
Mark your calendars as the Flint City Bucks will host their 12th consecutive College Challenge at Ultimate Soccer Arenas in Pontiac on Saturday, April 4 from 12-6 PM. The triple header action of men’s college soccer will feature some of the top NCAA programs in the country, beginning with Michigan State vs Oakland, followed by Notre Dame vs Butler and Michigan vs. Xavier. Ticket information will be available later this month on the Bucks website.
All three of the Bucks 2020 MLS SuperDraft picks (Higgins, Nielsen, Wetungu) participated in this prestigious event over the past several years and the Bucks will look to add recruits from each of the competing teams to fill out their roster this upcoming season. There are over a dozen MLS top prospects represented by these high-quality NCAA Division 1 soccer programs that are scheduled to participate.