The Earthquakes signed their first Homegrown Player, 18-year-old Tommy Thompson, on Wednesday.
An attacking midfielder, Thompson will forgo his final three years at Indiana to compete in Major League Soccer. The Loomis native has trained in the Quakes' youth development program.
Quakes general manager John Doyle introduced Thompson during a ceremony on the grounds of the club's new stadium, which is scheduled to open in 2015 and is located across the street from Mineta San Jose International Airport.
Doyle discovered Thompson about four years ago at a club game in Sacramento.
"I think he created 10 chances, ran by players, scored a couple goals, and I thought, man, this is a real kid that can make it," Doyle said.
It's been a whirlwind rise for Thompson, who graduated from Granite Bay High a year early to attend Indiana. Now he's trying to find an apartment in San Jose.
"There really isn't a better time to come into San Jose," Thompson said. "This stadium is exciting. Just being here makes me even more excited."
The Quakes are the last team in MLS to have a homegrown signing, which does not work against a club's salary cap. Per MLS rules, a club may sign a player to his first pro deal without subjecting him to the MLS SuperDraft if the player has trained for at least one year in the club's youth development program and has met the League's Homegrown Player criteria. Players joining MLS through this mechanism are known as Homegrown Players.
Thompson is part of an impressive soccer family -- his brother Ty played as a sophomore at Stanford last season, and brother Tanner was Tommy's teammate as a fellow freshman at Indiana. Thompson's dad Gregg starred at Indiana before playing professionally and with the U.S. national and Olympic teams.
Defensive coordinator Kenwick Thompson is leaving San Jose State's staff to join Derek Mason at Vanderbilt, according to sources and FootballScoop.com. There's no word on who'll replace Thompson. San Jose State hasn't confirmed his departure nor has Vanderbilt confirmed the hire. According to FootballScoop.com, Thompson's title with the Commodores hasn't been determined, but he'll be coaching the outside linebackers under Mason, the former Stanford defensive coordinator.
Thomas made his official visit to Stanford on the weekend of Jan. 10. He's expected to make his decision on signing day Feb. 5.
Bobsledder Andreas Drbal of Belmont is headed to the Sochi Olympics as an alternate for the U.S. team, officials announced. Bobsledders not going to Russia but included in the pool of replacement athletes are Emily Azevedo of Chico, Maureen Ajoku of San Jose and Chuck Berkeley of Walnut Creek. Azevedo and Berkeley competed in the Vancouver Games.
Staff writers Jimmy Durkin and Elliott Almond and wire reports contributed to this report.