Welcome to the 2012 UCSB Gauchos Official Thread. The Gauchos are coming off a season where they made it to the Sweet 16, had 3 players drafted to MLS teams, had their first All-American and again topped the attendance chart. The Gauchos lose some key players in a variety of ways, but return a huge chunk of the starters from last year. Because of this it would be hard to call this a rebuilding year. The hope is incoming players can fill the very big shoes left by our top players that are no longer here. There are a few questions to start to year in my opinion: 1) Where will goals come from? - Losing Silva and Garza means that UCSB loses more than half their goal production from last year. Nonni and Opoku leaving dwindles the forward line as well. 2) What will happen at the goalkeeping spot? - Grandt was an underacheiver at best and cost UCSB quite a few games with poor communication and decision making. Mansker is healthy this year and supposedly a talented freshman is coming in. This spot is up for grabs as of right now. 3) Can UCSB remain healthy and injury-free? - Injuries really took a toll on the Gauchos last year. The early season loss of McGlynn was arguably the biggest loss while injuries to Fifi, MD and Glodack happened at key times. Granted UCSB isn't necessarily in control of these injuries happening, but if they can avoid them this year, the team will be in better shape. One thing to note is that freshman forward Chris Roell suffered a horrific accident last weekend. Isla Vista as many of you know is located right on the beach and houses located on the street called Del Playa typically have a 50 foot cliff as part of their backyard. While at a party Chris fell off the cliff. He was rushed to a hospital in Santa Barbara and was in critical condition. This week his condition has improved tremendously. He is breathing on his own, speaking, able to do some physical therapy and can start eating food on his own again. He still has a long road ahead, but he has the love and support of not only his family from home, but his Gaucho family here. That's it for right now, but I'll update as time goes on including a roster dance and potential starting line-ups. This year has already had its talks about being something special not only on the field, but off. Hoping the Gauchos on the field and the Locos in the stands can set themselves apart even more from the rest of the College Soccer world.