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Saturday, Dec. 9
The Indiana Daily Student

sports men's soccer

Bruin a Dynamo at Professional Soccer

Former IU standout forward Will Bruin, who was drafted 11th in the 2011 MLS SuperDraft, is currently in his second season with the Houston Dynamo. IDS reporter Alex McCarthy caught up with Bruin just before the Dynamo took on the New England Revolution on May 19. Bruin scored his team-leading fifth goal in a 2-2 draw. 

IDS How have you had to adjust from collegiate soccer to the MLS?

Will Bruin
It’s definitely a different jump up because everybody’s just as big and strong and fast, so you kind of have to adapt to the league and figure out what works and what doesn’t. You also have to adjust your body to the length of the season. I went from playing three and a half months back at school at Indiana, and it’s about a nine-month season here.
IDS You mentioned figuring out what works and what doesn’t. What kinds of specific techniques or strategies worked at IU that don’t work as well now?

At Indiana, I could pretty much play the same way every game — make runs behind and body people off because I was a little bigger and a little stronger than some of the guys. Now, you have to base your play based on your matchups.

If you are playing somebody and you know that they like to press you and they’re not the quickest, then you’ll have to get in behind more. If you’re playing a fast defender and they’re not going to be up your back the whole time, then you’ll have to check into the middle and turn and go at them.
IDS You were the first Houston rookie to start on Opening Day last year and kind of got thrown right into the mix. Now, you’re leading the team in goals this year. Do you see yourself as the go-to guy on that offense?

Yeah, last year was a big learning year. Like you said, I kind of got thrown into the fire right away and had to adjust on the fly and then the knee injury in the summer, so I had a lot of highs and lows.

It was just a really good overall learning experience, and I feel like I’ve grown a lot from last year to this year, but there’s still a long season and still a lot more to learn. I’m just taking it game by game.
You scored in three straight games earlier this year. What allowed you to keep that momentum??

I think I went through a little streak where I was pretty confident. I was like, ‘Hey, look, I’ve been scoring. I’ll keep doing what I’m doing and don’t really change anything up.’ Like I said, it’s a long season. You’re going to have highs and lows. You’ve just got to stick with it. You can’t get too high on the highs, can’t get too low on the lows.

The franchise record (for consecutive games with a goal) was three games. During that fourth one, was that kind of in the back of your head?

I honestly had no idea. That’s the first time I’ve actually heard it, when you said it. Yeah, going into that New York game, we had a real busy schedule. We had a Wednesday game at New York, a Saturday game at home, a Tuesday game at home and now we’re in New England. We had a really busy schedule, with a lot of guys playing and a lot of guys getting minutes, getting time, and a lot of guys have been stepping up.
IDS After your knee surgery last year, what was the recovery process like?

Bruin Obviously, since I’ve never really had that serious of an injury, it was difficult for me because I’m not used to sitting out a while. I was getting pretty antsy sitting there being like, ‘Well, I can’t run yet, I can still kind of rehab and everything,’ so it was definitely difficult, but it was an eye-opener, too. Just with one play, you can be out a month or be injured with something, so it’s just important to take care of your body and do a lot of injury-prevention stuff.
IDS A couple of IU players have found their way onto MLS rosters. What’s it like to go against them?

Bruin It will be fun. We played Portland on Tuesday and (former IU standout) Eric Alexander is on Portland. I talked to him before and after, but I don’t really talk to him on the field when we’re on different teams. It was fun to catch up with them off the field and see how their life is going and how everything is going. It’s always good to play them.

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