CONCACAF 2012 U-20 WWC qualifiers are five weeks away (March 1st). There hasn't been too much news out about the team, though the groups and schedule has been set: Group A: Mexico, Canada, Haiti, Jamaica Group B: Panama, United States, Guatemala, Cuba The USA plays Guatemala first, then Cuba, and then the hosts, Panama, last. Three teams go to the U-20 WWC from CONCACAF, so as long as the USA advances out of the group, they have two chance to qualify (by either winning a semifinal or by winning the 3rd place match). U-20 Player Pool: The player pool on USSoccer.com is not up to date, so here's the roster from a training camp that finished last week (Jan. 5-19):Notes: (1) Player links go to bio pages. If I did not find a college or club bio, I then went with their old bio on USSoccer.com or a news article. (2) Players with bold names were members of the USA's 2010 U-20 WWC squad (which went out in the quarterfinals). (3) Players with italicized names were members of either the USA's 2010 U-17 WWC CONCACAF Qualifiers squad (which did not qualify for that WWC), or the USA 2008 U-17 WWC Squad (overtime loss in the final to Korea DPR). (4) Players with asterisks after their names were one of the 18 players on the roster for the 2011 Ten Nations Tournament in Spain. (This was the most recent event with a limited roster.) GOALKEEPERS (4): Bryane Heaberlin (Clearwater Chargers; St. Petersburg, Fla.) Jami Kranich (Villanova; Hamden, Conn.) Abby Smith* (Dallas Texans ECNL U18; Dallas, Texas) Abby Steele (Oregon; Santa Rosa, Calif.) DEFENDERS (10): Olivia Brannon (Virginia; Troy, Mich.) Kori Chapic (Penn State; Russell, Ohio) Abby Dahlkemper* (UCLA; Menlo Park, Calif.) Crystal Dunn (North Carolina; Rockville Centre, N.Y.) Jaelene Hinkle (Texas Tech; Denver, Colo.) Julie Johnston* (Santa Clara; Mesa, Ariz.) Kassey Kallman* (Florida State; Woodbury, Minn.) Casey Morrison (Boston College; York, Pa.) Mollie Pathman* (Duke; Durham, N.C.) Cari Roccaro (Albertson Fury; East Islip, N.Y.) MIDFIELDERS (7): Morgan Brian* (Virginia; St. Simmons Island, Ga.) Kaysie Clark (Missouri; Liberty, Mo.) Vanessa DiBernardo (Illinois; Naperville, Ill.) Kaitlyn Fitzpatrick (UC Berkeley; Pleasanton, Calif.) Sarah Killion* (UCLA; Fort Wayne, Ind.) Mandy Laddish* (Notre Dame; Lee’s Summit, Mo.) Sam Mewis* (UCLA; Hanson, Mass.) FORWARDS (9): Micaela Capelle (Portland; Gresham, Ore.) Maya Hayes (Penn State; West Orange, N.J.) Lindsey Horan* (Colorado Rush; Golden, Colo.) Sophia Huerta (Santa Clara; Boise, Idaho) Stephanie McCaffrey (Boston College; Winchester, Mass.) Kealia Ohai (North Carolina; Draper, Utah) Kate Schwindel (West Virginia; Livingston, N.J.) Katie Stengel* (Wake Forest; Melbourne, Fla.) Chi Ubogagu (Stanford; Coppell, Texas) Player Notes: Morgan Brian (2011) and Mollie Pathman (2010) are the two most recent Gatorade National Girls Soccer Players of the Year. (Other past winners of that award include Teresa Noyola, Melissa Henderson, Lauren Cheney, Amy Rodriguez, Heather O'Reilly, and Aly Wagner.) NCAA Stats: Maya Hayes had a break-out sophomore year at Penn State last fall, scoring 31 goals (at a rate of 1.192 goal per match), to lead the nation in goals scored. She also had 9 assists. Stengel had 19 goals (6th place tie) and 8 assists. Meanwhile, DiBernardo had 17 goals (tie for 11th place) and 5 assists. The trio had 25 game-winning goals between them. Ubogagu had 10 goals and 10 assists (24th overall). Pathman had 11 assists (tied for 17th overall) and 6 goals. Morgan Brian, Maya Hayes, Julie Johnston, and Katie Stengel were among the fifteen 2011 MAC Hermann Trophy Semifinalists. Lindsey Horan led the U-17 team with 9 goals in the (disappointing) 2010 CONCACAF U17 WWC Qualifiers. Other players in the pool from that tournament are Smith, Heaberlin, Dahlkemper, Hinkle, Roccaro, Brian, and Clark. Chi Ubogagu was born in England (presumably to at least one parent who is a UK National) and moved to the USA when she was 3. Her grandfather (no name given in the Stanford bio) played for Tottenham Hotspurs and the Nigerian National Team, so it looks like she has some national team options beyond the USA. Huerta has a Mexican father, so she's another one that could do a Noyola. A possible roster? If I had to guess at an 21-player roster, I'd go with the following, which uses prior international experience (e.g., roster selections) as a primary factor. For the remaining slots, I'm using recent collegiate performance as the decider. GK (3): Heaberlin, Smith, Steele DEFENDERS (7): Brannon, Dahlkemper, Dunn, Johnston, Hinkle, Pathman, Roccaro MIDFIELDERS (6): Brian, Clark, DiBernardo, Fitzpatrick, Laddish, S. Mewis FORWARDS (5): Hayes, Huerta, Horan, Stengel, Ubogagu In this list, italicized names denote the last one in (e.g., on the bubble) for their position classification:GK: Steele seemed to have a better year than Kranich, though neither player's team had a winning record. Steele's Goals Allowed Per Game was 1.48 versus 1.78 for Kranich. DF: If Swanson goes with experience, then I expect either Chapic (3 goals, 5 assists) or Kallman (3 goals, 3 assists) being selected over Roccaro. Morrison had 2 goals (apparently both PKs) and 2 assists. MF: Fitzpatrick had 7 assists and 3 goals this year, compared to Killion's 2 assists. F: Of the other forwards, Huerta leads in the goal-scoring with 8, plus 2 assists (18 points). I went with Huerta over Schwindel (6 goals, 7 assists, 19 points) based on the Santa Clara factor. Ohai (6 goals, 6 assists, 18 points) had a relatively disappointing sophomore year, compared to her 14 goal freshman campaign. Capelle (5 goals, 7 assists, 17 points). McCaffrey (4 goals, 5 assists, 14 points). (All of the stats mentioned here are from the 2011 NCAA season.) This list does not take into account any particular formation or the player's normal playing position. Also, the coach (Swanson) is new to this team, so he may (hopefully) have different preferences than past coaches. Anyway, consider this a starting point for enlightened debate. *** News about the Team: Here's a TopDrawSoccer.com article about the training camp's two 60 minute scrimmages against Shanghai Women's FC. McCaffrey got the lone goal in the first scrimmage, which ended 1-0. Brian, Johnston, and Horan scored in the second scrimmage, which ended 3-0. Also, back in August, USSoccer.com post a Q&A with the team's new head coach, Steve Swanson. The team heads to Spain in February. I'm assuming it's for another La Manga Ten Nations Tournament (which is not a competitive tournament, the teams basically just play three friendlies and that's it).