The Draft road not taken with Jeremy Ebobisse: The Portland Prodigy


A draft day trade allowed for Jeremy Ebobisse to be selected 4th overall by the Portland Timbers.

January 13th, 2017. That’s the day Jeremy Ebobisse got to finally hear his name called on stage at the 2017 MLS Superdraft. “The draft was a surreal experience. From the moment I woke up that day, to when I met up with my fellow draftees, it was all so much to take in,” Jeremy explains. “I think we were all super emotional in a good way as there was a lot of build up to that day.”

He was projected the top prospect and likely #1 pick, despite neither of the top two teams desperately needing a striker. He shared, “I had no clue where I would go. I had been hearing a lot about different teams wanting to take me, but no one gave a firm commitment, so in the end I had to just be patient and wait until the draft.”

The Portland Timbers made a trade with the Houston Dynamo to acquire the 4th overall selection. With that pick, they selected the game changing, young forward from Duke University.

“It was a pleasant surprise to be selected by Portland. To join a team with a short, but winning history is a special opportunity,” expressed the new Portland Timbers forward. “Playing in front of the Timbers Army is something few players, let alone draftees, will get to experience and I can’t wait to get started. I have also heard really good things about the city so I am looking forward to getting started.” He had the chance to speak to his new head coach Caleb Porter a little bit at the draft. He’s also had the chance to talk to some of his new teammates, and his fellow draftees. From those conversations, he gets the vibe that everyone is really exciting to get going. He admits, “I think I have a lot to bring to the team, but I also have a lot to learn.”

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What are the goals he set for his rookie campaign? “I want to win a big trophy this year. The Supporters Shield or MLS Cup would be a successful first season in the league,” said the ambitious 19-year-old. “Individually, I just want to push myself as hard as I can everyday to play my role to the best of my ability. I want to make the most of whatever time I get on the field but I think its most important that I am a good teammate on and off the field.”

Portland drafted a premier talent. He can score many different ways, holds up play and distributes the ball, and is a high character player. For the club that just won the MLS Cup in 2015, he will be a big part in getting them back to that level.

And to Timbers Army, he says this: I would like to thank the Timbers Army for the extremely warm welcome. From the second I got off the draft stage, I was overwhelmed with supportive messages welcoming me to the city. I can’t wait to repay your support with some memorable wins and performances.