Dec. 15, 2004
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ohio State senior forward Justin Cook has earned third-team NSCAA/adidas All-America honors, the NSCAA (National Soccer Coaches of Association of America) announced this week. He also has been named as one of 66 collegiate seniors invited to the Major League Soccer combine, Jan. 8-11 in Carson, Calif., leading up to the 2005 MLS SuperDraft in Baltimore, Jan. 14.
Cook, a native of Winter Springs, Fla. (Oviedo H.S.), is the first Ohio State men’s soccer player to earn All-America honors since several players received national honors in the 1950s. He is the first Buckeye to be selected for the MLS combine.
“We are delighted Justin was recognized as an All-American,” John Bluem, Ohio State head coach, said. “He is certainly deserving of the award based on his earlier accomplishment of being named the Big Ten Player of the Year. He had an outstanding season and was a big reason for the success of the team this year. It’s a fantastic honor for Justin and we are proud of him.”
Cook led Ohio State to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA tournament as the Buckeyes won their first two NCAA tournament games in program history and tied the school record for wins along the way with a 12-7-2 overall record. He was named the 2004 Big Ten Player of the Year and was a first-team All-Great Lakes Region selection as he led Ohio State to its first share of a Big Ten regular season championship.
Cook, Ohio State’s 2004 captain, led the conference in scoring in league games, while in all games he ranked third in the Big Ten in scoring and finished the season with a team-high 30 points from 12 goals and six assists. He ended his career as Ohio State’s all-time leader in shots (191) and tied for the all-time lead in assists (17). Cook’s 33 career goals rank second all-time and his 71 shots this season set the single-season record.
Cook could become Ohio State’s third player to be selected in the MLS draft. Former Buckeyes Andy Rosenband and Jake Traeger were drafted in 2003.
“Justin’s goal has always been to play in the MLS,” Bluem said. “He came back (to Ohio State) for his senior year to establish credibility and to get the opportunity to be drafted and play in the MLS. Being selected to play in the combine gives him that opportunity. He had a great senior season and we are very happy he has been selected to represent Ohio State.”
### GO BUCKS! ###