JASON KREIS DEBUTS ON NATIONAL SOCCER HALL OF FAME PLAYER BALLOT
RSL Head Coach among Six First-timers on List of 25 Eligible Players;
Voting Concludes March 11, Followed by Early Spring Announcement of the “Class of 2011”
SANDY, Utah / CHICAGO (Thursday, February 17, 2011) – Ballots have been finalized for the National Soccer Hall of Fame Class of 2011 and voting will begin immediately for the Player, Veteran Player and Builder categories. Real Salt Lake Head Coach Jason Kreis is among six players making their first appearance on the Player ballot this year, the debutant group including RSL alumnus Eddie Pope in addition to Chris Armas, Cobi Jones, Carlos Llamosa, and Danielle Slaton.
25 players in total are included on the 2011 Player ballot, including another American soccer stalwart with Claret-and-Cobalt ties, recently-departed assistant coach Robin Fraser. Voting will continue through March 11, and the election results will be announced in early Spring.
“To be eligible for selection to the National Soccer Hall of Fame is truly an honor, especially considering the talented individuals I share the ballot with,” said Kreis. “Having played alongside or against so many players on the list I can personally attest to the strength of this year’s candidates. Whoever earns the great distinction of being named to the ‘Class of 2011’ will certainly have earned it.”
A player whose immense talent was surpassed only by his legendary work ethic, Kreis enjoyed a standout 12-season Major League Soccer career with FC Dallas (1996-2004) and Real Salt Lake (2005-2007) before hanging up his cleats as the captain of the Utah side to become its second head coach in May 2007. The Duke University product would not take long to prove wrong those who doubted his ability to perform at the next level, his 13-goal, five-assist output during his 1996 rookie campaign in Dallas setting the stage for a career during which he would tally 74 assists and 108 goals, the latter standing as the most in MLS history at the time of his retirement and currently the fourth most in League annals. The many highlights on Kreis’ list of accolades during his illustrious playing career include his selection as the first American-born player to win the MLS Most Valuable Player award (1999) and 14 “caps” as a member of the U.S. Men’s National Team (1996-2000).
In order to be eligible for election as a Player, an individual must be retired as a player for between three and 10 calendar years and have either: 1) Played in at least 20 international games for the U.S., or 2) Played at least five seasons in an American first division professional league and be named to a post-season all-league or all-star team at least once.
The voting pool includes all Hall of Famers, select soccer administrators and designated media members. Each voter can list up to 10 candidates per ballot. Any player appearing on at least 66.7 percent of ballots will earn election, while any player who does not appear on at least five percent of ballots will be dropped from the Player ballot.
2011 National Soccer Hall of Fame Player Ballot
Chris Armas *
Raul Diaz Arce
Cobi Jones *
Jason Kreis *
Carlos Llamosa *
Eddie Pope *
Danielle Slaton *
Steve Trittschuh ^
* First year of eligibility
^ Final year of eligibility; moves to Veteran ballot in 2012
In addition to the Player ballot, voting is also underway in the Veteran Player and Builder categories. Ten players are up for selection on the Veteran ballot, which is voted on only by current Hall of Famers. Voters can name up to five candidates, and the top vote-getter will be elected as long as he or she appears on a minimum of 50 percent of the ballots. If no Veteran appears on 50 percent of the ballots then no one will be elected on the 2011 ballot. More than one candidate may be elected in the event of a tie.
Eligibility for the Veteran ballot is the same as the Player ballot except that a player must be retired for more than 10 years. Further, the U.S. National Team cap requirement is lowered from 20 to 10 if the 10 caps came prior to 1990.
2011 National Soccer Hall of Fame Veteran Ballot
The 2011 Builder ballot includes seven individuals selected by a screening committee and follows the same procedures for election as the Veteran ballot, although the voting pool is expanded to also include select soccer administrators.
Builders are nominated by making their mark in the soccer community in a non-playing capacity while sustaining a major and positive impact on U.S. Soccer on a national or professional level for 10 years. Referees must serve as a FIFA referee for at least seven years to be eligible.
2011 National Soccer Hall of Fame Builder Ballot
Complete information about the election and eligibility procedures is available online at ussoccer.com.
The National Soccer Hall of Fame closed its Oneonta, N.Y., facility in 2010 and during this transitional period the election process is being administered by U.S. Soccer Federation staff under election and eligibility guidelines established by the Hall of Fame board of directors.
Established in 1950, the National Soccer Hall of Fame is dedicated to the sport of soccer in America by celebrating its history, preserving its legacy, inspiring its youth and honoring its heroes for generations to come.