20 Years: FC Dallas Homegrown Players

Tailyr Irvine/Staff Photographer FILE – FC Dallas forward Jesus Ferreira (27, left), age 16, scores his first-ever goal — making him the youngest player in team history to score — during a game between FC Dallas and Real Salt Lake at Toyota Stadium in Frisco on June 3, 2017. (Tailyr Irvine/The Dallas Morning News)

As we continue our celebration of 3rd Degree’s 20th birthday, today we’re going to look back at 20 years of Homegrown Players signed by FC Dallas.

Since the creation of the Homegrown Player signing category in 2008, FCD has developed a reputation as having one of, if not the, best academies in MLS. Dan Hunt has stated the dream of an entire starting 11 of Homegrowns.

20 players have been signed by the Huntsmen from their Academy system, that’s a remarkable feat. While some have been massive success, not all of them have made it in MLS.

Let’s take a look back at each of them in order of their signing.

20 Homegrown Players

1. Bryan Leyva – (Chihuahua, Mexico) Attacking midfielder. First came on the soccer radar when as a kid he was invited to train with the Mexican National Team when they visited Dallas. After joining the FCD Academy in 2008, he became the first Academy player signed in 2009 at the age of 17. Leyva played for Mexico in the FIFA U17 World Cup in Nigeria in 2009. Made 9 appearances for FCD before being let go at the end of 2012. Leyva has been held back by injury and his size (5’6") and his career has never reached the heights imagined. Invited by FC Dallas Head Coach Oscar Pareja to FCD spring camp once or twice, he was last seen playing for Dallas City FC in the NPSL.

2. Victor Ulloa – (Wylie, Texas) Holding midfielder. Singed by FCD in 2010 for the 2011 season. Released by the club after the 2013 season but immediately brought back by Pareja for 2014. Including regular season and playoffs he has made 125 appearances for the club. In many ways he represents everything the FCD Academy and FC Dallas is in the Pareja era.

3. Ruben Luna – (Ciudad Victoria, Mexico) Forward. Luna has an amazing youth career. Named U16 Developmental Academy Player of the Year in 2009 (38 goals in 27 games) and U18 DA Best XI in 2010. Made one appearance with Mexico U20s. Signed with FCD the same day as Ulloa and Hernandez. Played 27 games for FC Dallas, scoring 3 goals, before being released at the end of 2012. During his time at FCD he scored 2 goals in a CONCACAF Champions League game and led the reserve league in scoring with 10 goals in 9 games in 2011. In 2013 led the Atlanta Silverbacks of the NASL to their first ever championship. Played with Inter Playa del Carmen in the Mexican 2nd division in 2014 and 2015. Currently plays for Rio Grande Valley FC Toros in the USL scoring 11 goals in 35 games in his time there.

4. Moises Hernandez – (Seagoville, Texas) Outside Back. Signed with Luna and Ulloa in 2010. Made 33 appearances for FC Dallas before his release at the end of 2016. Was sent on loans to Comunicaciones (Guatamala), Deportivo Saprissa (Costa Rica), and Rayo OKC (NASL) during his FCD days. Returned to Comunicaciones for the 2017 season making 26 appearances. Represented USA at the U20 level and Guatemala with 15 caps on the senior level.

5. Jonathan Top – (Fort Worth, Texas) Forward. Signed with FC Dallas in 2011, made 4 appearances. Loaned to Arizona United in 2014, joined them in 2015 after release by Dallas. Joined Comunicaciones in 2016 but is unaffiliated in 2017. A former US U20, Top earned one cap with Guatemala back in 2015.

6. Richard Sanchez – (Mission Hills, California) Goalkeeper. Sanchez played with Texas FC and Atletico Madrid’s U16s before joining the FCD Academy. Sanchez has represented Mexico at the U17, U20, and U21 levels; winning the FIFA U17 World Cup in 2011 (4-0-0), played in FIFA U-20 World Cup in Turkey (1-3-0, 1.25 GAA), and won the CONCACAF U20 Championship in 2013 (5-0-0, 0.20 GAA). After a loan stint with Fort Lauderdale Strikers, Sanchez was sold by FCD to Tigres UANL for a reported $1 million. Loaned by Tigres back to FCD then to Tampico Madero for two seasons. Released by Tigres this summer, rumors floated of a return to FC Dallas since the club was in need of a keeper. Instead Sanchez signed with MLS and was taken by the Chicago Fire via the MLS Allocation process.

7. Bradlee Baladez – (Mesquite, Texas) Forward. The slightly rarer Homegrown Player who played in College first. Part of the FCD Academy team that went to the USSDA Finals in 2009 and 2010, Baladez played three seasons at the University of South Carolina. Signed as a Homegrown prior to the 2013 MLS season. Made one appearance for FCD while spending most of 2013 on loan to Fort Lauderdale Strikers. Released by FCD at the end of 2013, Baladez played with Arizona United in 2014 and Carolina Railhawks in 2015. Current whereabouts unknown.

8. London Woodbury – (McKinney, Texas) Outside Back. Another college homegrown player. A former US U18, won a gold medal at the Australian International Olympic festival in 2008. FCD Academy in 2008-2009, played college soccer for Maryland where he was a 3rd Team NSCAA All-American in 2012. Played PDL with the Baltimore Bays that year. Signed to a Homegrown deal January 2013 and played one season with FC Dallas (8 games). Released in early 2014, played with Arizona United that year. In 2015 Signed by the New England Revolution for whom he still plays, making 43 appearances in 3 seasons.

9. Coy Craft – (Abingdon, Virginia) Forward, Midfielder. Joined FCD Academy in 2011 and won 5 consecutive USSDA Texas/Frontier Division titles. Signed a homegrown deal in 2014 and has made 6 appearances with FC Dallas. On loan to OKC Energy in 2016. A US U18 and U20, won the 2017 CONCACAF U20 Championship. Still plays with FC Dallas.

10. Kellyn Acosta – (Plano, Texas) Holding Midfielder. Born 13 miles from Toyota Stadium. Joined the FC Dallas Academy in 2009 and named USSDA Central Conference Player of the Year in 2011-12. Sign with FC Dallas in late 2013. Although he has represented the US at the U17, U18, U20, U23 and senior level he could have chosen to play for Japan as his father was born there. Played in the 2011 FIFA U17 World Cup and was the youngest member of the US team at the 2013 FIFA U20 World Cup. Has made 110 regular season and playoff appearances for FC Dallas. Arguably the best player produced by the FCD Academy to date.

11. Jesse Gonzalez – (Edenton, NC) Goalkeeper. Grew up in Dallas where he played for CD Independiente prior to joining the FCD Academy in 2011. Signed with FC Dallas in March of 2013. Loaned to Pittsburgh Riverhounds in 2015 but only played one game. Became a starter for FCD in the final run of 2015 and has made 50 starts in goal total for Los Toros. Led all MLS goalkeepers with a 0.91 gaa in 2015. Played for Mexico at U18, U20, and U23 level, started for El Tri at the 2015 CONCACAF U20 Championships and the 2015 FIFA U20 World Cup. In 2017 opted to play for USA at the senior level as part of the Gold Cup and is now cap tied to them.

12. Danny Garcia – (Dallas, Texas) Midfielder. Joined FCD Academy in 2012 helping them win the U18 DA title that year. Played one season at UNC and was named ACC Freshman of the Year when he scored 4 goals and 6 assists. Signed with FC Dallas in 2013. Loaned to Arizona United in 2015. Released at the end of 2015. In 2016 played with San Antonio FC, which is owned by the Spurs. A former US U18 and U20 including the 2013 CONCACAF U20 Championship and the 2013 FIFA U20 World Cup. Unattached in 2017.

13. Alex Zendejas – (Ciudad Juarez, Mexico or El Paso, Texas) Winger. A.k.a. Alejandro Zendejas Saavedra. Born in El Paso, until he was sold by FC Dallas to Chivas after which they listed him as being born in Juarez (because of the Chivas fielding only Mexican players thing). Joined FCD Academy in 2012 and signed with FC Dallas in late 2014 making him the first Homegrown signed from an FCD affiliate, FC Dallas El Paso. Made 8 appearances with FCD over 2 seasons before being sold for $500,000. A former US U15 and U17, as part of signing for Chivas, Zendejas says he will only play for Mexico from now on. Has played 4 games for the Mexico U21s as of this writing. Currently on loan to Zacatepec

14. Aaron Guillen – (Chihuahua, Mexico) Defender. Moved to El Paso when he was 8. FC Dallas Academy 2011 and 2012, joined from El Paso affiliate. Won the 2012 U18 DA National Championship with FCD. Played four years of college ball at Florida Gulf Coast University where he was named 2015 Atlantic Sun Conference Defender of the Year as a senior. Signed homegrown deal with Dallas prior to 2016 season. Played PDL with Austin Aztex in 2013. Loaned to Tulsa Roughnecks in 2017 for a few games. Has made 8 appearances with FC Dallas and is still with the club.

15. Reggie Cannon – (Chicago, Illinois) Right Back. Played recreational level soccer with Predators prior to joining the FCD Academy for the 2015 and 2016 seasons. Played one season at UCLA. Signed a homegrown deal prior to 2017 season. A former US U17 and U19. Has made one start for FCD. Remains with FC Dallas.

16. Paxton Pomykal – (Lewisville, Texas) Midfielder. FC Dallas Academy 2014 to 2016 winning national championships at U16 and U18. Signed as a homegrown player in September of 2016. Has made two appearance with FCD and remains with the club. A former US U18 and U19. At his request he currently wears FCD’s #19 dedicated to the memory of Bobby Rhine and assigned only to homegrown players.

17. Jesus Ferreira – (Santa Marta, Colombia) Forward. The son of former FC Dallas midfielder and 2010 MLS MVP David Ferreira. An FCD Academy player from 2009 to 2016, Ferreira signed his homegrown deal at age 15. Scored a goal in his professional debut becoming the 2nd youngest player to score in MLS history. He’s been called into a US U17 team but has yet to play in an official game.

18. Bryan Reynolds – (Fort Worth, Texas) Winger. As an FCD Academy player won the 2015-16 U.S. Soccer Development Academy Championship. The youngest player ever signed as a homegrown by FC Dallas. His father Keith played at SMU under Schellus Hyndman and was a US Youth International. Reynolds’ younger brother is also with the FCD Academy. Has yet to make his pro debut spending most of 2017 with the US U17s in preparation for the 2017 FIFA U17 World Cup.

19. Carlos Avilez – (Dallas, Texas) Goalkeeper. Not technically a Homegrown Player as he was signed to a "USL affiliate" deal through the club relationship with OKC Energy. He’s essentially a training player and isn’t on FCD’s senior team roster. A player signed for FCD’s U23 USL team… that they don’t have. FCD Academy player since 2012, started for FCD’s 2016 USSDA Championship team. Remains contracted to FC Dallas.

20. Eduardo "Pollo" Cortes – (Zapopan, Mexico) Goalkeeper. Played three seasons with the FCD Academy, 2009 to 2011, starting in FCD’s first USSDA U18 Championship. Played four seasons at IUPUI from 2012 to 2015. Signed with St Louis FC in 2016 but did not play. Trialed with Indy Eleven in 2017. Not officially a homegrown player due to some roster technicality, but is on the FC Dallas roster in the supplemental section as their 3rd keeper.

What Else

"But wait," you say, "you said 20 years of homegrowns!"

True, I did.

But homegrowns have only exited since 2008. So let’s look back at what came before, Nike Project-40 and, as it’s called today, Generation adidas.

The Project-40 now Generation adidas program exists to sign "professional-ready players in the US developmental system not yet eligible for the MLS SuperDraft." The original idea being to allow MLS to compete with foreign clubs for young US kids and to help develop players for the US National team. Eligibility for US teams has been dropped as a qualifier for the program. Now the program signs up young talented players in this country of any nationality who aren’t homegrowns.

Importantly GA players don’t count against the MLS Salary cap. Since they are automatically professionals, they can’t ever play college soccer and thus a college scholarship is written into their contracts.

There is also a new Canadian Generation Adidas program, which will come into play late in this FC Dallas list of players.

Nike Project-40 players drafted or assigned to the Dallas Burn (1997-2005)

Juan Sastoque (1997) Midfielder. The Brooklyn native grew up in California and played one season for Cal State Northridge before joining DFW Toros in the USISL. Signed P40 and assigned to Dallas, Sastoque was sent on loan 5 times before being released in late 1998. Made 5 appearances for the Burn. He kicked around the mid-tier professional league for 10 years and is now a real estate agent in Allen, Texas.

Scott Vallow (1999) Goalkeeper. The Cally native played college soccer for Bowling Green State University before signing P-40 in 1999. Played for the Dallas Burn for only one season, most of it on loan to MLS’s P-40 USL team. In 2000 signed with Rochester Rhinos where he played most of his career. Vallow had short stints without playing with New England and Dallas before landing with Colorado for two seasons. In all he played 167 games with Rochester. He has been a professional soccer assistant coach since 2011 currently with the North Carolina Courage.

Eddie Johnson (2001) Forward. Arguably one of P-40s biggest success stories. Signed with MLS out of the US U17 residency program at IMG in Florida and drafted by the Burn. Scored 24 goals in 84 games for the Burn before being traded to Kansas City in a salary cap move. After leaving the Wizards at the end of ’07 he signed with Fulham in England who loaned him out to Cardiff City, Aris, and Preston North End. Johnson returned to MLS in 2012 with Seattle before playing the last 2 seasons of his career with DC United. A US U17, U20, U23, and senior international (19 goals in 63 caps) highlighted by the 2006 World Cup. Once famously said, "I don’t play video games. I’m a grown-ass man."

Miguel Saavedra (2001) Midfielder. He was kind of a mystery signing by P-40. Although he had been a fringe US U20, no one really knew why he was signed. Dallas selected him in the 6th round almost as a favor to MLS. The Burn loaned him to both Atlanta Silverbacks and Nashville Metros in 2001. Traded to Chicago along with Aleksey Korol for a 6th round pick in Jan 2002. Chicago that season loaned him to the Milwaukee Rampage. Waived in 2002 without playing a single MLS game he did appear in a 2002 CONCACAF Champions Cup game for the Fire. Current whereabouts unknown.

Jordan Stone (2002) Holding Midfielder. An Allen native, a US U17 and U20, Jordan signed P-40 in 2002 when he was selected by Dallas. He never reached his potential and retired after three seasons to attend college at Texas Tech. Stone has been a pastor at several churches since he retired.

Jason Thompson (2003) Forward. Garland native, played at Eastern Illinois from 2000 to 2002. As a freshman led the NCAA in scoring with 21 goals and was named MVC Newcomer of the Year. Injured in 2001, he rebounded in 2002 with 14 goals and 4 assists. Played with the US U23s that year and was signed P-40. Drafted by Dallas, Thompson tore his ACL with the U23s and missed the entire 2003 season. Traded in DC United in 2004 and was waived at the end of 2005. Completed his Doctor of Medicine at the UT School of Medicine in San Antonio and is currently an Orthopedic Surgery Resident there.

Clarence Goodson (2004) Center Back. Won the 1999 U17 National Championship with the Braddock Road Warhawks then played three years at Maryland. He also played in the offseason with Boulder Rapids Reserve, a U23 PDL team. Signing P-40 in 2004, Goodson was drafted by the Burn. He played 74 games in Dallas before being selected by the San Jose earthquakes in the 2007 expansion draft. Dallas had led left him exposed because Goodson wanted to sign in Europe, which he did with IK Start of Norway. In 2011, Goodson signed with Danish club Brøndby before returning to the Quakes in 2013 where he played till the end of 2016. Goodson is a US International having made 46 appearances with the US, including scoring in the 2009 Gold Cup semifinal against Honduras and being part of the 2010 World Cup squad. He also made one appearance on HGTV’s House Hunters International where he and his wife looked for an apartment in Copenhagen. Currently involved with the US Soccer Foundation and the effort to bring training fields to places in the US.

FC Dallas drafted Generation Adidas players (2005 to Current)

Drew Moor (2005) Defender. First started training with Dallas Burn as a teenager. One season at Furman and two at Indiana where he won back to back NCAA titles. 2004 PDL with Chicago Fire Premier. Drafted in ’05 by Dallas after signing Generation adidas. Played 123 games for Dallas before being traded to the Rapids for Schellas Hyndman’s favorite Ugo Ihemelu. Allowed to leave Colorado as a free agent, Moor signed for Toronto FC in 2016 where he still plays despite his heart arrhythmia diagnoses. A US U20, Moor has 5 caps for the senior US side. In 2011 he set the MLS record for consecutive games played by a field player with 68.

Dax McCarty (2006) Midfielder. US U17 residency then UNC for two seasons, along with PDL with Ajax Orlando Prospects. Signed GA and drafted by Dallas in 2006. Selected by Portland with their #1 expansion Draft pick at the end of the 2010 season he was immediately traded to DC United and then traded again midseason to New York Red Bulls. 169 games later he was once again traded, this time to Chicago where he still plays. A US U20 and U23, McCarty has 13 caps with the senior US side.

Blake Wagner (2006) Defender, Midfielder. Another IMG residency player, Wagner signed GA after playing in the 2005 FIFA U17 World Cup. Selected 18th overall by Dallas in 2006, he played 37 games for the Huntsmen before his contract expired at the end of 2009. In 2010 Wagner signed with Vancouver Whitecaps in the NASL. He was again signed by Vancouver, the MLS version, in 2011. In 2011 he signed with RSL, in 2012 with San Antonio (played 2 seasons), in 2014 with Tampa Bay Rowdies, and in 2015 with the Carolina Railhawks. In 2017 he became an assistant coach with Tampa Bay’s U23 team. Wagner was a US U17, U20, and U23.

Anthony Wallace (2007) Left Back, Holding Midfielder. Another IMG residency player signed GA and drafted by Dallas in 2007. Traded to Colorado in 2010 and taken by Portland in the 2010 expansion draft only to be immediately traded back to Colorado for allocation money. Wallace played with Tampa Bay Rowdies in 2014, New York Red Bulls in 2015, Jacksonville Armada in 2016, and OKC Energy in 2017. A former US U17 and U20, Wallace has one cap with the senior US team.

Fuad Ibrahim (2007) Forward. Born in Ethiopia but raised in Richfield, Minnesota. Yet another IMG residency kid. Signed GA and taken by Dallas in 2007. 0 games for Dallas before being traded to Toronto. After 26 games for Toronto over two seasons, Ibrahim did not play in 2011. He played with Minnesota Stars (future United) in 2012, then with AC Kajaani in Finland for two seasons, before re-joining Minnesota United in 2015 for one season. Current whereabouts unknown. A former US U17and U20, Ibrahim has 10 caps for Ethiopia at the senior level.

Eric Avila (2008) Forward, Midfielder. Another US residency kid, Avila played three seasons at USCB. Signed GA in 2008 he was drafted by Dallas 19th overall. In later 2011, FCD traded Avila to Toronto for Maicon Santos and an international roster spot. Since then Avila has played for Chivas USA (’12-’14), Santos Laguna (’15-’16), on loan with Orlando City (’15), with Tampa Bay Rowdies (’16), and is currently with Phoenix Rising FC. Avila is a former US U17 and U20.

Josh Lambo (2008) Goalkeeper, NFL Kicker. A former Chicago Magic youth player, Lambo was in US Residency when he signed GA. Drafted by FCD in 2008 he never played in an MLS game but did play in friendlies for the club. Missed second half of 2008 after breaking his jaw in a reserve game. Loaned to FC Tampa Bay in 2010. Waived at the end of 2011. He "retired" from soccer at 21. In the Fall of 2012, Lambo enrolled at Texas A&M where he became a kicker for the football team. In 2015, Lambo was signed as a free agent by the San Diego Charges where he kicked for two seasons and is now kicking with the Jacksonville Jaguars. Lambo is a former US U17 and U20.

Brek Shea (2008) Defender, Midfielder. The College Station native played for Texans SC (the Houston club) before joining US Residency. Signed GA in 2008 and drafted 2nd overall by FC Dallas. 98 games and 19 goals later, Shea signed with Stoke City in the EPL. After loan stints with Barnsley and Birmingham City, Shea returned to MLS and Orlando City in 2015. Shea was traded to Vancouver prior to the 2017 season. A former US U17, U20, and U23, Shea has 34 caps with the senior US team.

Peri Marosevic (2009) Forward. Born in Bosnia prior to the Bosnian War, Marosevic and family moved to German and then Illinois to escape the conflict. After playing youth soccer for Rockford Raptors and Chicago Sockers, Marosevic played three seasons and Michigan as well as PDL ball with Chicago Fire Premier. Signing GA in 2009, he was selected by FC Dallas. After a loan to Austin Aztex in 2010, Marosevic asked for his release in 2011 and was granted it by FCD. He then signed with Toronto FC where he finished the season. He has since played two seasons for Junak Sinj in Croatia, two seasons for New York Cosmos, and in 2015 played for Michigan Bucks of the PDL. Marosevic is a former US U17, U18, and U20. He’s currently a Development Academy Coordinator at U.S. Soccer.

Andrew Wiedeman (2010) Forward. An NSCAA All-American at Cal, Wiedeman signed GA after his junior year and was drafted by FC Dallas 21st overall. He was traded to Toronto in 2012 as part of the Julian de Guzman deal. After three season with Toronto he signed with the Ottawa Fury where he played one year. In 2016 he was one of the first 11 signings made by USL expansion team FC Cincinnati where he still plays. Wiedeman is a former US U18.

Walker Zimmerman (2013) Center Back. Out of the Gwinnett Soccer Association academy team in Georgia, Zimmerman played two seasons at Furman before signing Generation adidas. Drafted by FC Dallas 7th overall, Zimmerman remains with the club today. He’s made 89 regular season appearances for Los Toros. Zimmerman is a former US U18, U20, and U23. He recently received his first US senior cap.

Adonijah Reid (2017) Forward. Last, but not least. One of the new Canadian Generation adidas signings, picked by FC Dallas 40th overall. Began playing soccer age 5 with Caledon SC, later joining ANB Futbol Academy. In 2015 with ANB Futbol scored 20 goals in 20 games in League 1 Ontario. Reid spent 2017 on a season long loan to Ottawa Fury where he made 12 appearances scoring 1 goal. Reid turned 18 in August and is, as they say, one for the future. Reid has participated in developmental camps for Canada’s U18s and U20s, both while he was 16, and is also eligible for Jamaica.


3rd Degree is an independent FC Dallas blog. Founded in 1997, 3rd Degree has been in partnership with the Dallas Morning News since 2012. You can always find us at www.3rddegree.net and follow us on Twitter @3rdDegreeNet.

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D-Link renewal and reroute gives Dallas council members another excuse to complain about DART

Staff Photographer

A free downtown Dallas circulator bus will soon take a shorter, simpler route. That decision came only after a long, tortuous Dallas City Council discussion Wednesday.

Council members approved another year of the D-Link, which is meant to connect convention center visitors and downtown to central Dallas hotspots such as the Farmers Market, Deep Ellum and the Historic West End. But they took time first to vent about what they believe to be Dallas Area Rapid Transit’s shortcomings.

North Oak Cliff council member Scott Griggs said DART “is failing this city.” His western Dallas colleague Omar Narvaez said DART “has failed us.” Deputy Mayor Pro Tem Adam Medrano implored his colleagues to hold DART accountable, but still approve D-Link for another year.

City taxpayers, DART and Downtown Dallas, Inc., share the cost of operating the $1.6 million D-Link bus route. DART pays more than $1 million of the cost. For now, D-Link serves as a precursor to a new downtown streetcar that will connect existing streetcar lines in North Oak Cliff and Uptown.

Ridership on D-Link, which operates seven buses, has been meager. DART says about 300 people ride the bus on an average weekday and more than 400 ride on the weekends. But the pink-and-yellow buses, which pass by stops every 15 minutes on weekdays, can often be seen empty or near empty as they run through downtown streets.

Downtown Dallas, Inc., hopes the new route — which eliminates a trip through Ross Avenue in the West End and a foray into Uptown — will help increase ridership and efficiency. The new route begins in January. Kourtny Garrett, the group’s CEO and president, said the new route will help serve “most of the major entertainment areas downtown in a more simplified and user-friendly manner.”

Only council member Adam McGough voted against D-Link. McGough said he was excited for D-Link when it first began in 2013, but didn’t believe it has worked like it should. The city has too many other needs and D-Link is not the “highest, best use of city funds,” he said.

“I just have not seen this particular item be worth the funding we’re putting into it,” McGough said.

Several council members wanted D-Link or another free bus to come to their part of town. Garrett said she was open to expanding to Trinity Groves and welcomes other connections. But she said the city or private partners need to pitch in if they want to expand the service.

But other council members simply veered off topic and took turns beating up on DART. They said potential riders don’t feel safe and that they can’t get to work and that the city needs a new high-frequency, grid-based bus system. Mayor Pro Tem Dwaine Caraway even asked for new bushes instead of “dead grass” in his district. And Mayor Mike Rawlings didn’t slow his colleagues, waiting until afterward to note that the council had gone off topic too much.

DART spokesman Morgan Lyons said in response Wednesday that the agency is “continuing to work with the city on their concerns as we continue deploying the expanded and improved bus service in Dallas in the coming months.”

But the council members had been buoyed by a recent University of Texas at Arlington study that gave them data showing transit-dependent Dallas residents struggled to use DART efficiently to move around. Council members on Wednesday leveled a series of criticisms of DART’s bus service and rail expansion in the northern suburbs.

They also lauded the city’s new transportation director, who will start in two weeks, and City Manager T.C. Broadnax for creating the position. Sandy Greyson, who represents Far North Dallas, said she can’t wait for the director to start so the city can “become masters of our own fate for a change.” But she said the D-Link is at least one DART bus that is working properly.

“It’s doing what it was meant to do,” she said. “It’s a downtown circulator. And that’s what we were asking for, and that’s what has been provided.”

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North Texas Applies For Amazon’s Second Headquarters, But Details Remain Scarce

Fort Worth City Manager David Cooke discusses the North Texas bid for Amazon’s second headquarters at a regional chamber of commerce luncheon.

Amazon set off a big, public scramble when it announced last month it was looking for sites for a second North American headquarters.

It’s quite a prize: The e-commerce giant expects the new HQ to house up to 50,000 workers with salaries averaging $100,000, and it plans to spend billions of dollars building it. Thursday was the deadline to submit proposals, and North Texas has high hopes to land the company.

“I’m confident we’ve shared with Amazon all the things that have made this region a great place for corporate headquarters location,” Mike Rosa from the Dallas Regional Chamber said in a news release.

The proposal came with a video touting the region, apparently on the theme of “&” – as in “Amazon & DFW.” In the video, inspiring music plays over shots of iconic landmarks like Reunion Tower, the Fort Worth Stockyards, AT&T Stadium. People hold up signs with an ampersand and a handwritten word to describe North Texas.

Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price picked "&VIBRANT."

“I love D-FW because it’s vibrant,” Price says in the video. “If you can’t find it here, you can’t find it anywhere in the world.”

Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings chose “&EASY” because, he tells the camera, “It’s easy. It’s a great place to live.”

Others point to innovation, acceptance, low cost of living, education and margaritas.

All of the hype leaves many questions

Officials are tight-lipped about the details of the Dallas-Fort Worth proposal. Economic development proposals are usually quiet affairs, but Amazon gives the competition for its second headquarters a bit of reality TV flair.

Competition is expected to be fierce among American cities, but Amazon won’t go just anywhere. The company said it wants a metro with more than a million people, an educated workforce, good schools and strong public transit.

The company’s also very interested in tax credits and other financial enticements, which critics have argued could leave cities on the hook for building infrastructure to host the massive development but not bringing in enough cash to pay for it all. It’s too early to know how much money North Texas is willing to throw at Amazon.

It’s also not clear how many potential sites that the Dallas-Fort Worth proposal contained. Communities across North Texas have been laying out the case for a host of locations.

In Dallas, those include Trinity Groves just west of the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge, north Oak Cliff, Deep Ellum and Exposition Park. In Fort Worth, leaders have said Panther Island, the massive project north of downtown, would be a great site for Amazon. And there’s been a push from throughout the Mid-Cities and cities in Collin County as well. Frisco even made its own video a month ago.

Making adjustments to fit the bill

Amazon also gave a fairly short timeframe – just six weeks – for metro areas to make a pitch for such a massive development. Fort Worth City Manager David Cooke says it’s forced cities across the region ask important questions about its competitiveness.

“How strong is your tech work force? How strong is your transit system?” Cooke said. “And so those are areas that we have to look at ourselves and say ‘Are there areas we need to be improving on both on the education side or the transit side?’”

On transit, Cooke says there’s room for improvement, especially on the Fort Worth side. But he says the region’s transit network is growing.

Brandom Gengelbach from the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce said he thinks the region’s actually doing pretty well.

“From a D-FW perspective, I would put our transit against everyone,” Gengelbach said.

Maybe not the big, big cities like New York or Chicago, he conceded, but Gengelbach said the region is competitive with smaller, big cities like Nashville or Cincinnati or Indianapolis.

“The big thing that we talked about in our RFP is we’re really at the cutting edge of transit moving forward,” Gengelbach said. “We’ve got Uber Elevate; we’ve got driverless cars being tested in Arlington. And we can work with Amazon. We can work with other companies really to drive the future of transit when it has to do with our region.”

Amazon hasn’t said much about its timeline. Gingelbach says the next step is finding out whether North Texas makes the shortlist to host the headquarters.

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Dez Bryant, With A Little Help From Frederick, Bulldozes Into End Zone

GLENDALE, ARIZONA (105.3 The Fan) – Dez Bryant wouldn’t take no for an answer.

With the Cowboys on the Cardinals 15 yard-line, Bryant caught the ball in the middle of the field and went straight ahead to the end zone. Despite four Cardinals players trying to stop him from scoring, Bryant, with some help from Cowboys center Travis Frederick, kept his legs moving and fought his way into the end zone.

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Fall weather is finally making its way to Dallas-Fort Worth, but will it last?

We’ve got good news and bad news. The good news: Fall weather is almost here. A cold front will move into the Dallas area around rush hour Monday evening, according to the National Weather Service in Fort Worth.

The bad news: It won’t last.

Expect a noticeable drop in temperature around 6 or 7 p.m. Monday, said meteorologist Lamont Bain with the National Weather Service. That’ll be a welcome respite from record-breaking heat — a high of 96 degrees logged at DFW International Airport.

The last time it was nearly that hot on this date was in 1963, when the temperature climbed to 95 degrees.

But temper your excitement, because the forecast also calls for a 50 percent chance of rain with the potential for isolated severe weather.

If there is severe weather, the main threat will be strong winds and hail, and it will be focused on small areas.

"It’s not going to be an instance where the entire Metroplex gets wet," Bain said.

You can expect blustery weather overnight, with a high around 70 on Tuesday. Early Wednesday will be even cooler than Tuesday morning, with temperatures hovering around 50 degrees, Bain said, though the mercury may reach the mid-70s by Wednesday afternoon.

Enjoy the comfort of a jacket because we’re expected to be back in the 80s toward the end of the week. It’ll feel more pleasant than the recent humid heat we’ve experienced in North Texas, Bain said, though the forecast calls for muggier and hotter weather by Saturday — possibly a return to the low 90s.

Meteorologists can’t say when North Texas might see a prolonged stretch of cool weather. The National Weather Service projects that we’re headed toward another mild winter, Bain said.

Well, at least we can cry into our pumpkin-spice lattes.

Here’s a look at what meteorologists at KXAS-TV (NBC5) have in the forecast for the week:

Tuesday: 72/55; partly cloudy
Wednesday: 76/54; mostly sunny
Thursday: 86/60; mostly sunny
Friday: 91/69; mostly sunny

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Despite today’s offensive-minded game, these Dallas-area teams are finding ways to keep opponents out of the end zone

Stewart F. House/Special Contributor Plano West High School quarterback Jake Sweeney (17) scrambles during the first half as Plano West High School hosted Sachse High School at John Clark Stadium in Plano on Friday night, September 8, 2017. (Stewart F. House/Special Contributor)

Opponents have tried it all against Sachse this season — run, pass, even trick plays to get the ball rolling on offense.

But time and time again, teams have been contained by a dominant Sachse defense that has only allowed 13 points in four weeks. Two of those weeks, Sachse pitched a shutout.

For top area teams, holding just one opponent to zero points in a game is a challenge. Pitching two shutouts in a span of a few weeks is whole different task.

Sachse (4-0) and Mansfield Summit (3-1) were the only area teams to record two shutouts in the first three weeks of the season. Spruce, Adamson and Fort Worth Southwest Christian all picked up their second in Week 4 – when many area teams were on bye.

Overall, 31 area teams have pitched at least one shutout through the first four weeks of the season. But in today’s offensive-minded game, how do defenses manage to contain these high-powered offenses?

"These days it’s extremely hard," Sachse coach Mark Behrens said. "The offenses that we faced, to have two shutouts this early in the season is a testament to those guys as well as our offense."

But for top area teams, the mindset of shutouts differ.

For Sachse, No. 3 in the Class 6A SportsDayHS area rankings, shutouts show their sign of dominance. For No. 2 DeSoto (3-0), it has yet to force its opponents to throw up a goose egg this season, but the goal of its defense isn’t a shutout. Rather, when a game starts to get that out of hand, DeSoto sends in its backups to get experience and reps in the second half.

"We maybe could have held them, but we are going to play other kids," DeSoto coach Todd Peterman said.

Behrens said the biggest thing about shutouts is to continuously keep the defensive substitutions rolling. It helps to add in an offense that manages to sustain long drives while scoring, which allows the defense keeps fresh bodies on the field at all times.

Sachse is a team known in the past more for its offensive firepower than its defense, but Behrens said the focus has shifted.

"We used to try to outscore people and that was open enrollment that gets you some skill kids over here — especially when they see how many people are receiving the ball," said Behrens, in his 14th year as the Mustangs’ head coach. "The bottom line is getting wins and we felt like we needed to be a bit stronger defensively and we are doing that now."

Sachse senior defensive back Isaiah Humphries, a Penn State commit, said he originally came to Sachse as a wide receiver after eighth grade. It wasn’t until after his freshman season he switched to defensive back. It was at the same time Sachse got a new defensive coordinator with the aim to change the program’s defensive mindset.

"He was like, ‘I know you guys aren’t known for defense,’ but he’s like, ‘We are going to change,’" Humphries said. "My junior year, we started shutting people down. … We have a lot of guys going D1, and it’s really crazy how it’s shifted in the years I’ve been here."

Summit coach Channon Hall said keeping opponents to zero points is always a goal, but it isn’t that simple.

"You know just getting 15-, 16-, 17-year-old kids to focus that long is always a hard task," Hall said. "But when they do that with a great mentality and a great sense of energy and a great sense of focus, it is always special."

Summit senior linebacker Dreylan Hines, one of the team’s leaders on defense, said that in its two shutouts this season, the team has been all about confidence. Without the mindset of knowing the team can do it, it won’t happen.

"We’ve just improved every game and we always keep our energy up, especially in those two games," Hines said. "Our motto is ‘Swarm and Punish.’"

Area teams with multiple shutouts through Week 4
School First shutout Second shutout Adamson 65-0 Fort Worth Polytechnic (Week 1) 56-0 Conrad (Week 4) Sachse 48-0 Plano West (Week 2) 61-0 Mesquite (Week 3) Mansfield Summit 36-0 Saginaw Chisholm Trail (Week 2) 45-0 Fort Worth Paschal (Week 3) Spruce 43-0 North Dallas (Week 2) 32-0 Sunset (Week 4) FW Southwest Christian 41-0 Arlington Pantego Christian (Week 3) 42-0 Arlington Grace Prep (Week 4)

Twitter: @SamanthaJPell

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Check Out These Three Restaurants On The North End Of Dallas

Dallas is so huge that you really need to look at it in sections. North Dallas is a popular section of the city, and you will definitely enjoy time spent there. Do you plan on calling North Dallas home? If you are moving to Dallas, you are going to have more than one opportunity to visit each one of these restaurants. It is time to take a look at three of the best restaurants in North Dallas.

Maple Leaf Diner is one of those establishments, and doesn’t it just sound like a cozy and comfortable place to enjoy a nice meal? Maple Leaf Diner is great for breakfast, brunch or lunch. One of the reviews made me laugh because the person mentioned that nothing on the menu is healthy. Now, this was said in a positive way, and I mean it that way, too. Yes, it’s great to eat healthy and find restaurants that serve healthy food. However, you have to love a place like this when you are on vacation.

Thai Fusion is another popular place in North Dallas, and it is on Preston Road. Would you like to enjoy some duck curry? That is one of their popular dishes. Thai Fusion also serves up delicious egg rolls, Tom Kha soup and much more. Now this is a place where you can eat delicious food that is also healthy. That is one thing about Thai cuisine for sure.

We have one more restaurant to look at in North Dallas. Cattleack Barbecue is the place, and don’t you just love the name? They serve up delicious barbecue there, Texas style, and so there is no way you are leaving there disappointed. In fact, none of the three North Dallas restaurants in this article should come even close to disappointing you.

East Dallas brewpub will spill craft beer with White Rock Lake views

White Rock Alehouse will serve craft beer with a view. Photo courtesy of WRAB

After a long three years in the making, things are finally under way for White Rock Alehouse & Brewery, a new brewpub restaurant opening at the intersection of Gaston Avenue and Garland Road, aka the center of the White Rock Lake universe.

Founders Dave Kirk and Greg Nixon are launching this joint venture for all the right reasons, including neighborhood pride and a fondness for craft beer.

“It’s an East Dallas thing,” says Dave. “Greg and I both live in Lake Highlands and we love the White Rock Lake area. For many years, it’s been underserved as far as places to go out to eat and drink. That’s where our idea came from.”

Their original plan was a brewery.

“We’d been drinking your typical domestic beer, but our tastes evolved along with the evolution of craft beer,” Dave says. “We’d visited breweries around the country and realized there was a need for something like this in East Dallas.”

Their concept evolved, as well. “We realized that food should be a big piece of it,” Greg says.

Unlike some who have opened breweries in recent years, the two friends are not home brewer hobbyists, although they have done home brewing. Really, they just like craft beer.

“Blake Morrison will be joining our family as head brewer,” Greg says. “He spent years as an avid home brewer before acquiring six years of commercial brewing experience, including helping two start-up breweries get off the ground.”

Morrison helped formulate several of the beers for Cedar Creek Brewery in Seven Points, Texas, including the popular Dankosaurus IPA. He also created the lineup of beers at Whistle Post Brewing in Pilot Point. Morrison and his wife are Lake Highlands residents, making a local gig that much more alluring.

They’re still finalizing their beer lineup. “Keeping folks happy is the goal,” Dave says. “The craft beer world has become very seasonal. Time of year will dictate some of what we offer, with Christmas ales and the heavier stuff like stouts and porters in cold months, and wheaty beers in the summer.”

Their official license will be a brewpub, meaning they can brew onsite with a small system wherein everything they brew will be served in-house.

The food will feature dishes that pair well with craft beer, with an eye toward foodies and those who use the lake. They’ll be open for lunch, dinner, brunch, and happy hour, and will be available for special events.

“In general terms, the food will be American but a little bit elevated,” Greg says. “One of our goals is that, whatever the dish is, we’ll give it a little upgrade or twist. And having food that pairs with beers is an important part, as well. We’re committed to having food that’s as good as the beer.”

Their plan is to open quietly in November, and to carve out a realm as a mostly-adult place to hang out.

“We recognize that there are families in Lakewood and we will welcome everyone,” Greg says. “But we want to make sure we’re different from the places where kids are running around. We’ll be family-friendly — but a big part of the feedback we’ve already gotten is that people would like us to provide an alternative to the kid thing.”

They’re going into the center with the PetSmart and a Tom Thumb. They’re at the north end next to Ace Hardware, and the best part is that they’re adjacent to the trailhead. They’ll have a 4,000-square-foot patio with seating and a beer garden.

In the end, it’s all about the lake.

“Our goal is to be lake centric,” Greg says. “We’ll be catering to the active lake community, and our decor will reflect that by incorporating elements of cycling and running and boating. There’ll be elements that remind you of that, or give a nod to features around the lake, done in a unique way.”


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