Following an outstanding college career, UNCW senior forward Colin Bonner will have a chance to showcase his talents for professional scouts after being invited to the 2016 adidas Major League Soccer Player Combine.
The Fulton, Md., native is one of 59 NCAA Division I college players participating in the event in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., from Jan. 7-12. Invited players will be eligible for selection in the 2016 MLS SuperDraft presented by adidas on Thursday, Jan. 14, in Baltimore.
“This is great news for Colin,” UNCW Coach Aidan Heaney said. “His goal is to become a professional soccer player and he will now have the opportunity to play with and against the best college soccer players in the nation under the eyes of every Major League Soccer Coach as well as NASL and USL coaches.
“I am certain Colin will do well and hopefully that translates into getting drafted and making that jump to the pros,” Heaney continued. “He has the tools and skill set as a striker that many coaches would like to add to their squads and now has the best stage to showcase his talents.”
A First-Team NSCAA All-Midwest Region selection, Bonner was the Seahawks’ leading scorer with 20 points, scoring seven goals with six assists. He tied for third in the CAA in goals and points and earned CAA Co-Player of the Week honors after netting three goals in a 5-1 win over North Florida on Sept. 4.
In addition, the First-Team All-State and All-Colonial Athletic Association honoree became the first men’s soccer player in UNCW history to be awarded First-Team CoSIDA Academic All-America® honors and was a candidate for the Senior CLASS Award.
Bonner, who started 72 of 75 career games for the Seahawks, finished his career as the ninth-leading scorer in history with 61 points. He ranks 10th all-time with 23 goals and his 15 career assists tie him for seventh on the all-time list.
Bonner joins Indy Smith (2011) as the only UNCW players to receive an invite to the MLS Player Combine in the last five years.
A committee of MLS coaches and NCAA Division I coaches from each conference selects the invitees, all of whom completed their college eligibility this season. Additional invitees, including Generation adidas signings, non-collegiate players and more college seniors, will be announced in the coming weeks.