This is what came up when I searched for a picture of Omphroy. Bravo SB Nation picture editor caption thingy, bravo! TORONTO, CANADA - SEPTEMBER 17: Demitrius Omphroy #2 of Toronto FC battles for the ball with Sanna Nyassi #23 of Colorado Rapids during MLS action at the BMO Field September 17, 2011 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Abelimages/Getty Images)
We've reached the end of the first group of players within the TFC top 40, those whose impact on the field was so negligible as to leave many people struggling to remember anything at all about them. At the top of this group, meaning he's reached the lofty heights of 35th overall, Ladies and Gentlemen, Boys and Girls, as of yesterday he's apparently no longer with us, it's Demitrius Omphroy.
Average Rank: 35.045
Highest Rank: 24
Lowest Rank: 39
Duncan: 35. How the hell did Omphroy get up to 35th? He played roughly 2 minutes in the first team, I'm not even sure he touched the ball. Even in the ranks of the barely ever played, back here in the first few days of the countdown, he didn't even get 10% of the playing time of the next lowest man in the playing time standings (It's Friday night, I'm drunk, I'm not going to fact check, but I'll stand by that assertion). He did do alright with the reserve team, and over the year, switched from the Right Back that we all thought he was to one of the forward positions. That's not what pushed him so high though, it's not really Demitrius Omphroy we rated, it's all about MeatyTwit.
That is of course his twitter name, and it's his social media and general off the pitch activities that gave him a profile beyond what his playing time really earned. Even before he got to Toronto, his starring role in this "For UR Love" video with his University of California soccer team marked him out as more interesting than your average 2nd round pick. His enthusiastic tweeting meant he had a much higher profile than other reserve players, and got him as far as an audition for Degrassi.
It's certainly up for debate whether that's a good thing or not, I'm not an automatic fan of such attention grabbing among the young and unproven (and don't get my inner grumpy old man started on his hair), but it was his charity work that makes me appreciate him. No matter how cynical you are, his embracing of the position of role model for those living with Multiple Sclerosis, and his many public appearances and awareness raising for charities battling the condition do seriously deserve a lot of credit, and got him a well deserved nomination for the MLS W.O.R.K.S Humanitarian of the year award.
He was also always ready to promote the club and meet fans, which he did right up to the end. On Thursday night, one day before he made his release known, he was one of the players at the latest 'pub crawl' event, which brings up two possibilities. Either Omphroy knew it was coming and did the classy thing to go out and make the fans happy one last time, or he didn't know, and TFC and MLSE are magnificently ruthless bastards. I'd like to hope it's the former.
It's a shame we never got the chance, and now never will, to see if his play on the pitch could warrant the off pitch attention he made for himself. I sincerely wish him well wherever he ends up next, and hope he gets the chance, based solely on his talent and not impeded by his MS, to make a career for himself in football.
More opinions on Omphroy after the jump, all of which were submitted before he was released.
Dave: 38. He got his three minutes in the first team, he got hurt, he then got moved back to his natural position of forward. All that adds up to Omph not getting the chance to live up to his draft position. If he is around next season he should be given more chances to show what he can do. For me though he will always be a TFC player that I have a soft spot for and his season highlights will be getting nominated for the MLS W.O.R.K.S Humanitarian Award and for getting an audition to be on Degrassi. He is also a good young player to look up to as he is battling MS and still living out his dream.
Keaton: 24. I was really excited about Omphroy when TFC drafted him, and I'm still pumped about this guy. He's that cool, kind of quiet hipster guy you went to high school with. He's very approachable and marketable. But we've yet to see him play for the first team. Word on the street is that he's been converted to a forward since playing with the Reserves. That will be very interesting to see next year. He's here to stay for while I believe.
Alex: Good off-field ambassador, didn't really play though
Kristin: Replacing Ricketts as Twitter user extraordinaire. Unproven on the pitch.
James: Jovial on Twitter, excellent charitable work, and an artisit. Loves tattoos and auditioned for DeGrassi. Highest Ranked of the NA category.
JC_Plante: Was supposed to be the right back for the future. His lack of passion and desire for the sport will be his downfall
The Yorkies: If he played like he Tweets he'd be amazing
Canadian Texan: Riiight...Omphroy. I remember him. Hoping for more next year as he develops
Devon Taylor: A promising youngster, but too soon to tell if he can become a regular first team player.
Blindfolded Tank Driver: Draft pick needs more seasoning and a Degrassi cameo!