Jimmy Conrad was a pretty good soccer player in his day. A Defensive Player of the Year award, nearly 25 United States National Team caps and three MLS Best XI selections are accomplishments almost any player would be proud of. But believe it or not, we may have only scratched the service in terms of what he can bring to the sport now that he has retired.
Just take a look at some of his comments while announcing his retirement. There aren't a lot of people who can take a swipe at a coach like Sigi Schmid's bonafides without sounding like a complete ass, but he manages to do it:
"I look at some coaches I played for in the past, who had a physique that wasn't athletic, you know, and you wonder: Who are you to tell me I'm slow. Slow? You can barely kick the ball, and you're telling me what to do?"
Former coaches were far from the only people who incurred the wrath of his sharp tongue as he headed out the door. Taylor Twellman, who was never actually a teammate of Conrad's, got more than a bit of guff for reaching out as one concussed athlete to another:
"I have a good relationship with Taylor. Sometimes, it's hard to navigate through the waters of his ADD. But I did that. I tried. I tried to get something substantial from him, some substance. ... I'm sure you're going to write that one up. It will be fun to apologize to him for that."
This is a player whose place in the domestic game seems as cemented as any. By all rights, he should receive a hero's welcome when he travels to Kansas City, where he spent most of his best years. How welcome, well Conrad has some ideas:
On whether he's heard from officials with Kansas City, with which he spent the bulk of his career: "Like, a statue [outside their stadium]? Are you asking about a statue? I'm working on that. It would be nice -- I'm just throwing that out."
Even if Conrad wasn't a great player, his personality alone would make him a strong candidate to be the voice of MLS. When compared to some of the former players currently making names for themselves on national TV, it seems like an absolute no brainer to get Conrad on board.
For more on Jimmy Conrad's next career move, make sure to check out The Goat Parade.