The United Soccer Coaches and Missouri Athletic Club announced Thursday the watch list for the most prestigious individual award in collegiate soccer, and IU sophomore defender Jack Maher is on it.
Maher is the only sophomore out of the 36 players up for the MAC Hermann Trophy.
As a freshman last season, Maher was one of only three players to start all 24 matches for the Hoosiers, helping them make the College Cup for the second-straight season and finish with a record of 20-3-1. Playing center back, Maher helped the Hoosiers post a NCAA-best 15 shutouts in 2018 and allow just 13 goals all year.
He was the Big Ten Freshman of the Year in 2018 and earned Freshmen First-Team All-America honors from both Top Drawer Soccer and College Soccer News.
“It didn’t take long for Jack Maher to establish himself as one of the top players in the college game,” IU Head Coach Todd Yeagley said in an IU athletics press release. “We are excited to see Jack continue to elevate his game as he enters his second year with the program. Jack is on his way to becoming one of the finest IU players to wear the jersey.”
An IU player has been named the national player of the year 12 times, including Yeagley. Last year, then-senior defender Andrew Gutman won the award after scoring 11 goals and having nine assists on the season. graduates Grant Lillard was a runner-up in 2017, and Tanner Thompson was a semifinalist for in 2016.
Fifteen semifinalists will be named for both the men’s and women’s MAC Hermann Trophy near the end of the college season based on voting by NCAA Division I coaches. From those candidates, three finalists will be placed on the ballot for the coveted award.
This year’s winners will be announced Jan. 10, 2020 at the Missouri Athletic Club in St. Louis.
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Pietersen and Lomeli both previously worked with IU.
Parsons will be representing Canada.
The event starts at 4:30 p.m.