A year ago Andrew Mullins had every reason to leave collegiate soccer behind in his rear view mirror, but he didn’t.
He was the MAC Hermann Trophy winner, symbolic of the Division I National Player of the Year. It was an All-America season, and professional teams and the Major League Soccer SuperDraft were calling his name.
While opportunity called, Mullins made the decision only he could make. He would remain at the University of Maryland for his senior year. He was staying because he wanted to stay.
You only get one chance in life to be a college student/athlete, and the native of New Orleans, was all in for his senior season.
To say that Maryland coach Sasho Cirovski welcomed his decision is more than an under-statement. As a senior Mullins leads the team in goals, assists, points, shots and shots on goal. That’s about as much as you could ask of the Terps’ senior captain.
Earlier in the season, Mullins, who was the Louisiana Gatorade Player of the Year as a senior at Jesuit HS, was named ACC Player of the Week after his two-goal performance in the Terps’ 3-1 road win over fourth-ranked and previously unbeaten Clemson. Maryland is nationally ranked #12 with a 6-3-5 record, but the Terps have lost only once in the Atlantic Coast Conference.
This article is Premium, please Log in or Subscribe to view full content![show_to accesslevel=’Subscriber’] Wake Forest leads the conference at 5-0-4, while the Terps and Notre Dame are both 5-1-3. The conference championship and the league’s automatic bid to postseason play, are up for grabs.
Actually, all three are likely candidates for high seeds as at large selections should they not win the conference title. The ACC has six teams ranked in the Top 25, including Clemson, North Carolina and Virginia.
While this will be Mullins’ last year of collegiate soccer, it will also be the last one for Maryland as a member of the ACC. The Terps are moving to the Big Ten next year.
Maryland has a rich history of men’s soccer in the ACC, and the school was a founding member of the conference.
The Terps first fielded a team in 1949, long before the league was formed. Doyle Royal coached that first team, and his Terps ruled the conference in the early years.
Cirovski is the fifth head coach in program history, and he has restored the program to national prominance. Maryland has been in the NCAA postseason tournament 32 times, winning three championships. Two of those, in 2005 and 2008, were Cirovski coached teams.
A year ago the Terps reached the College Cup weekend, and lost in the semifinals.
Another reason why Mullins decided to stay. Another shot at the elusive brass ring in College Park.
The Rest Of The ACC
Like Maryland, Wake Forest has tied five matches this fall, five in conference play, but the Demon Deacons are 5-0-4 in the league.
Draws are not uncommon this year. North Carolina, ranked #1 early in the season, also has tied five conference games. The Tar Heels have been hit by injuries, but remain in the national rankings. UNC has only taken one loss in posting a 3-1-5 league mark.
Virginia has tied four conference games to go along with three wins and a pair of losses. Clemson, ranked as high as #4 nationally in September is still #14 with a 9-3-2 overall mark, 5-2-2 in the ACC.
Notre Dame, ranked #1 when the Irish was 8-0-5, is the big winner of the three newcomers to the league. Syracuse, 1-6-1 in league games, is next to last in the ACC standings, just ahead of winless Pitt (0-7-2).
In recent individual conference honors, Wake Forest senior forwrd Luca Gimenez was named ACC Player of the Week after his five-point effort off the bench keyed the Demon Deacons to an ACC road win over the Terps, ranked #4 at the time. Two goals against the Terps came on the only two shots Gimenez took in the game.
Your subscription has expired please
Subscribe to Southern Soccer Scene to view full article and get all the news in your mailbox![/hide_from]