Our American sports' writer, Sean Grybos gives us his take on two more Collegiate football players in North America who might make the grade in England.
Forward - Cameron Keith
University of Binghamton Bearcats
Junior (3rd Year) in 2008
14 July 1987
Cameron Keith (Aberdeenshire, Scotland) spent two seasons playing in the Scottish Highland Football League before leaving to compete at the collegiate level at the University of Binghamton. Keith interestingly enough played for Keith FC. During the 2006/2007 season, his club claimed the league title after an impressive and historic run; Cameron Keith dominated individually as well. In the league, he was top goal scorer in all competitions scoring 26 goals - 13 in the league and 13 in cup competitions.
While at Binghamton this fall, the Bearcats forward scored 10 goals. Keith opened his scoring with a hat trick versus Cornell. He scored a second hat trick later in the season versus Maine. The feat was especially meaningful because his family made the journey from Scotland to attend the game.
At the conclusion of the season, he was named the 2007 America East Conference Striker of the Year. He was also named to the America East All-Conference First Team and the NSCAA All-Northeast Region First Team.
Below you will find two sample questions from my recent interview with the forward.
How did the league ready you for playing collegiate soccer with the Bearcats?
Cameron Keith: I felt like I was able to adapt quite well and become a leader within the side straight away. This is because I was used to playing with grown men who show no mercy for two seasons. I felt like this really toughened me up for coming across here. However, I must say that the fitness demands are a lot higher here and the technical level of players is a lot better than I expected.
You scored your first hat trick of the season against Cornell in the first game ever to be played at the Bearcats Sports Complex. What was your favorite goal of the three?
Cameron Keith: To be honest, my favorite was the first goal for a few reasons. Firstly, it was the first ever goal to be scored at the Bearcats Sports Complex so that was special. Also, I was not playing that well at the time and I knew that I was about to be taken off until I scored. Thirdly, it was actually a wonderful goal and one of the better ones I have scored in my time.
Attacking Midfielder - Bruno Guarda
Southern Methodist University Mustangs
Senior (4th Year) in 2008
Bruno Guarda (Piracicaba, Brazil) was the focus of one of America's most offensively-minded soccer programs last season. His creative flair and offensive skill were instrumental in the Mustangs successful season. In 2007, he finished with eight goals and seven assists. Five of his goals were game winners.
Guarda was the two-time Conference USA Player of the Year (2006 & 2007). He was also named to the 2007 Conference USA All-Conference First Team and the NSCAA All-Midwest Region First Team.
Along with his regional awards and accolades, Guarda has been nominated in the last two seasons for the prestigious Hermann Trophy. The Hermann Trophy is awarded to the nation's best collegiate soccer player.