Maryland men’s soccer forward Gordon Wild has signed with Generation Adidas and will enter this month’s MLS Draft, joining midfielder Eryk Williamson as Terps who are foregoing their senior seasons to turn pro.
Wild, who spent his freshman season at USC Upstate, dominated in his first two years of college but struggled mightily in 2017. The Cologne, Germany, native totaled 33 combined goals in his freshman and sophomore seasons, tying for first and second in the nation in each of those years.
But Wild scored just five times as a junior — twice on penalty kicks — and ended his college career on a 13-game scoreless streak. Nobody with the team offered an explanation for Wild’s downturn, though coach Sasho Cirovski said the junior was under a lot of pressure. Cirovski also had Wild come off the bench in one game midway through the season in an attempt to reset him, he said.
“He’s a proven attacking player and one of the best goalscorers in college soccer for the last three years,” Cirovski said in a news release Friday. “He was a little snake bit this year, but I know he will find the back of the net at the next level.”
Generation Adidas players are underclassmen signed to an MLS contract and entered in the MLS SuperDraft, which takes place Jan. 19. Generation Adidas players do not count toward MLS players’ salary budgets.
Wild is one of six Generation Adidas players this year and is joined by two Big Ten players, Michigan forward Francis Atuahene and Indiana forward Mason Toye. The last Maryland player to sign with Generation Adidas was forward Schillo Tshuma in 2014.
Wild and Williamson both considered turning pro before the 2017 season but elected to remain at Maryland for another year. Williamson is not eligible for the MLS draft due to his status as a homegrown D.C. United player.