The symbiosis between MLS and college soccer may be somewhat fraught, but on the women’s side the college-to-NWSL pipeline has never been stronger.
There are few women’s development vehicles – if any – anywhere in the world with more gravitas and importance than the Division I women’s college game at the moment. It attracts top internationals like Deyna Castellanos and Jessie Fleming and pulls in just about every major USWNT prospect of record. Stories of players skipping the college route like Mallory Pugh and Lindsay Horan exist, but they’re few and far between.
That means each senior class in particular is of enormous import to the NWSL. And the 2017 crop is no exception.
This particular senior group is perhaps a bit lighter than usual. It doesn’t have the depth of previous classes and is notably lacking in star power. But there are still a handful of future pros here capable of making ground-quaking impact the moment they hit training camp next year. This group in particular should corral your attention this fall, because all seven will undoubtedly be high draft picks. If they don’t flee for leagues abroad first, of course.