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Jimmy Conrad: US Soccer's man of the people

Soccer Columnist

Published: Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Updated: Tuesday, January 21, 2014 00:01

   When Jimmy Conrad is not around vandalizing New York City with KICKTV stickers, or rallying the Sporting Kansas City supporters at MLS Cup, he’s typically found in the increasingly popular KICKTV offices talking about soccer all throughout the globe.

During the past year or so with KICKTV as a faux journalist, Conrad has proved he’s more than a retired soccer player - he’s an innovator. Conrad’s antics and prevalence on the social media scene have drawn immediate attention from all ages of soccer loving supporters both domestically and abroad. From Temple City High School in California, to majoring in math at UCLA, to more uncomfortable images of him running the streets of Spain in nothing but a speedo for El Clasico, Conrad is a wizard.

Whether it be magically, his self proclaimed best hair in the business, or the literal fact he was a member of the Kansas City Wizards from 2003-2010, Conradinho captivates his viewers.

In nearly every video he’s featured on, and every KICKTV Live show he does there’s a sense of how genuine he is. Love him or hate him his passion for soccer cannot be questioned. Whilst I’ve personally never had the luxury of meeting the man in person, he appears a good-hearted individual who is determined to grow the world’s recognition of soccer, particularly in the United States.

And he does so in an unorthodox manner. But, that is always how Jimmy Conrad would do things.

After going undrafted by MLS, Conrad had to work himself into the professional ranks. Beginning his career off with an unsuccessful trial with the Los Angeles Galaxy, Conrad began his quest to MLS with the San Diego Flash in 1998, before moving to San Jose where he featured with the Earthquakes until 2002.

Hailed as one of the best defenders the United States ever had, Conrad earned 27 caps with the men’s national team. The 2005 MLS Defender of the Year would then silence rumors of a potential move to Europe after the 2006 season, renewing his contract in the beautiful Kansas City. A city which without the plethora of knowledge that is Jimmy Conrad, we’d never know has the second most amount of fountains in the world only behind Rome, Italy.

Google “Jimmy Conrad.” Sure you’ll see him with his trademark pout-face in his Wizards or USA jersey, but look at the man’s smile. He loved his playing career. With his 13-year playing career behind him, it comes to no surprise he loves his current job as well.

After all, Conrad is not a faux journalist - he is what a journalist should be. We could take away the vulgarity and cursing during his KICKTV videos, but that would not be Conrad. As he was a former professional athlete, he can relate to Megan Rapinoe and have her be his “best friend forever” or enjoy a lovely ferris wheel ride with Aston Villa’s Brad Guzan.

Conrad and KICKTV bring their viewers close up to the action. Conradinho can joke, enjoy the Manchester Derby, or take on the a more serious interview with Landon Donovan - this man is a journalist with intent, and unaffected with how others perceive him.

We all love Jimmy Conrad. He walks amongst the working class fans, taking shots of Whiskey with KC fans, and clearly still has a posse in the wonderful land of Sporting Park.

We’re all KICKTV Ultras, just trying to channel our own inner Conrad. I’d like to call him one of the luckiest men in the world.

 

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