Akpan Selected in Second Round of MLS SuperDraft by Colorado Rapids; Nyamekye Chosen in Fourth Round by Columbus Crew
Pictured: Andre Akpan (right) with Colorado Rapids Managing
Director Jeff Plush
Photo courtesy: Colorado Rapids
2010 MLS SuperDraft Draft Tracker
Colorado Rapids Official Website
Columbus Crew Official Website
Philly.com Interview with Andre Akpan
Colorado Rapids Video Interview with Andre Akpan
PHILADELPHIA -- Forward Andre Akpan of the Harvard men’s soccer team was chosen in the second round with the 22nd overall pick in the 2010 MLS SuperDraft by the Colorado Rapids. Senior defender Kwaku Nyamekye was selected in the fourth round and 60th overall by the Columbus Crew and joined Akpan as the only Ivy League players taken in this year’s draft.
Akpan, who graduated from Harvard last semester, and Nyamekye became the fifth and sixth Harvard players to be chosen since the MLS draft’s inception in 1996, joining Will Kohler ’97 (15th overall in 1997) Tom McLaughlin ’98 (36th overall in 1998), Kevin Ara ’04 (24th in 2004) and Michael Fucito ’08-09 (46th in 2009).
A runner-up for the Missouri Athletic Club's Hermann Trophy, presented to the nation’s top collegiate player, Akpan was named to the Soccer America MVPs first team, as well as the National Soccer Coaches Association of America All-America first team and College Soccer News All-America first team as a senior.
A native of Grand Prairie, Texas, Akpan, a three-time semifinalist for the Hermann Trophy, was the Ivy League Player of the Year this season after leading Harvard and the Ancient Eight with 30 points and 12 goals. Akpan netted four game-winning tallies and earned his fourth straight unanimous nod to the All-Ivy League first team. A member of the Top Drawer Soccer National Team of the Year, Akpan helped Harvard win its second Ivy League title in four seasons this fall, as the Crimson went 14-4-1 overall and 5-1-1 in Ivy play. Harvard, which finished the season ranked ninth, reached as high as No. 6 in the national polls during the regular season and advanced to the third round of the NCAA tournament after defeating Monmouth, 2-0, in the second round Nov. 22.
In 2009, Akpan ranked 13th in the nation with 0.63 goals per game and 15th with 1.58 points per contest. He ranks first in school history with 33 assists, and with a goal against Monmouth in the NCAA tournament, he tied Chris Ohiri ’64 for first in the Crimson annals with 47 tallies. A co-captain of the Crimson this fall, Akpan, a three-time NSCAA All-America performer, was tabbed the Ivy League Player of the Week twice and netted two goals in a game on three occasions. An ECAC Division I Men’s All-Star choice, Akpan also succeeded in the classroom, earning a spot on the prestigious Academic All-Ivy League team.
Nyamekye, a native of Geneva, Switzerland, joined Akpan as the only unanimous choices to the All-Ivy League first team this past season. Nyamekye, a three-time NSCAA All-Northeast Region pick, was also a four-time All-Ivy selection and was the Crimson's leader at defense during his stint at Harvard. He started all 19 games this fall, helping Harvard surrender only 15 goals to opponents in 2009. Nyamekye also scored a goal in Harvard's 2-1 victory over Dartmouth Oct. 31, propelling the Crimson to first place in the Ancient Eight standings. An excellent athlete, Nyamekye was also tabbed to the ECAC Division I Men’s All-Star team.
During their four seasons with the Crimson, Akpan and Nyamekye helped Harvard reach the NCAA tournament ever year and won two Ivy League titles (2006 and 2009). Harvard posted an overall record of 52-19-3 and was an impressive 21-6-1 in Ivy League contests.