SBI MLS Rookie of the Week: Joe Willis


Photo by Jose L. Argueta/

D.C. United's rookie crop has turned in quite the season.

This past weekend it was goalkeeper Joe Willis' turn to answer the call, as he stepped in for the suspended Bill Hamid and delivered some top-notch saves against the Vancouver Whitecaps en route to a clean sheet in his MLS debut and earned SBI MLS Rookie of the Week honors. Willis, a third-round pick in the 2011 MLS SuperDraft, came up big with a save on a Camilo free kick and also robbed Eric Hassli by reading a cross to perfection to keep the Whitecaps off the scoreboard.

Willis joins fellow D.C. rookies Perry Kitchen, Ethan White and Blake Brettschneider as players who have captured the award, and he beat out the likes of Portland's Darlington Nagbe and Columbus' Justin Meram to take the weekly honors.

What did you think of Willis' performance? Who was the top rookie this past week for you?

Share your thoughts below.

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7 Responses to SBI MLS Rookie of the Week: Joe Willis

  1. Postmaster says:

    It was a great performance for any backup — especially for a rookie — especially for the debut of an unheralded rookie. A very pleasant surprise for DC supporters. One has to imagine Cronin (who but for injury, might have taken a run at the starting job) is now looking overpriced as a #3.

  2. wilyboy says:

    It’s crazy that we have a 20 year old as our starter, already getting national team calls, and we’ve got this kid who had a monstrous game. DC is one of the few teams that really has the youth factor working for them.

  3. kris says:

    As a DCU fan, I was shocked and not feeling good when I saw he was starting on Saturday. What a pleasant surprise!!

  4. kris says:

    They’ve really done well in the draft too. Each draft pick has now put in some valuable time with the first team.

  5. MiamiAl says:

    The kid came up big! I suspect with the rate of Hamid’s upward trajectory, sorry to say that it will not be long before he might leave for bigger and greener pastures. Definitely a good move to keep and groom Joe Willis for when that day comes…

  6. Good Jeremy says:

    DCU’s young guns are looking good, congrats to them for getting the draft and academy working so well. Hopefully the rest of the league can figure out how to coach up young players like that.

  7. Naboo says:

    cronin has looked sloppy when i’ve seen him, esp. when he came on for hamid against toronto…if this display from willis wasnt a fluke i’d be happy to see cronin as 3rd string