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Jan. 14, 2010
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Former Penn State forward Jason Yeisley was selected by FC Dallas with the sixth pick in the third round of the 2010 Major League Soccer SuperDraft, which was held on Thursday afternoon in Philadelphia. The Allentown, Pa. native was the 38th overall player drafted and the first from the Big Ten.
"I am very excited to be drafted by FC Dallas and have the opportunity to potentially continue my soccer career," said Yeisley. "I owe so much to everyone at Penn State who helped me get to where I am today. I was very lucky to have the quality medical and training staff that helped me return from injury successfully. The Penn State soccer program is among the best in the country and I am proud to have been a part of it."
Yeisley departed Penn State following a distinguished and highly decorated collegiate career marked both by excellence and adversity. After missing the 2008 season while recovering from a serious knee injury suffered the year prior, he battled back to return for his senior season. Yeisley's hard work paid off, as he flourished in 2009, leading Penn State to an undefeated regular season home record, a second place finish in the Big Ten, the Big Ten Tournament title game, and a berth in the NCAA Championship. He was a central figure on the Big Ten's top scoring offense, totaling eight goals and five assists to tie for second on the team with 21 points. During the year, Yeisley was named Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week (Sept. 7) for the second time in his career and to the Soccer America Team of the Week (Sept. 6), the College Soccer News National Team of the Week (Oct. 4), and to the all-tournament teams for the Wolstein and Penn State Classics. Yeisley's standout season culminated with his selection by the conference coaches as Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year and First Team All-Big Ten He was also named to the NSCAA All-Great Lakes Region Second Team.
Also an all-conference selection in 2005 and 2007, Yeisley totaled 24 goals and 16 assists (64 points) in 63 career games. A three-time team captain, including in 2009, he overcame two knee injuries, over the course of his career. In recognition of the exemplary character he displayed in triumphing over adversity, Yeisley was presented with the True Grit Award at the 2009 Penn State Student-Athlete Advisory Board Academic Achievement Awards Banquet.
In December, Yeisley was announced as the 2009 winner of the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award for men's soccer, an honor presented annually to the most outstanding senior student-athlete in NCAA Division I men's soccer.
FC Dallas posted an 11-13-6 record in 2009, missing the MLS playoffs by one point. It boasted the league's top offense a year ago, scoring 50 goals. Head coach Schellas Hyndman is entering his second season at the helm of FC Dallas after spending 31 highly-successful years in the collegiate ranks, including 24 at nearby SMU. FC Dallas plays its home games at Pizza Hut Park, a 21,193-seat state-of-the-art, world-class complex located in Frisco, Texas, approximately 30 miles from downtown Dallas.
"Jason (Yeisley), is another attacking player and his college coach is a great coach in Barry Gorman at Penn State, who is a great teacher of the game, so you know when you get somebody from Penn State, he's going to be a well educated player," said Hyndman in a quote posted on the FC Dallas website following the draft. "He has good size, a striker, holds the ball quite well, a good finisher of the ball, and I think he'll be able to add to what we have already. One of the things I said we wanted was attacking players and he definitely can do that and he's also a pretty smart kid. He's done well academically and will be a quick learner."