On Thursday, NISA (National Independent Soccer Association) club Chattanooga Football Club (FC) announced the signing of former Virginia Tech Men’s Soccer player James Kasak. NISA is in the third tier of professional soccer in the United States, after relaunching in 2017. Chattanooga is one of nine clubs expected to take part in the spring half of the 2020-21 campaign. They finished in first place in the Eastern Conference during the Fall 2020 season before being knocked out in the playoff semi-finals.
Following a standout career in Blacksburg, Kasak became just the 7th Virginia Tech Men’s Soccer player to be selected in the MLS Draft in 2020. As the program continues to challenge for ACC and NCAA titles, the Hokies have had five players taken in the draft over the past five seasons.
We’re proud to announce the signing of James Kasak! This VA Tech LB led his team deep into the NCAA Tournament his senior year and we can’t wait to see him at Fort Finley.— Chattanooga Football Club (@ChattanoogaFC) February 10, 2021
Watch @james_kasak live this season! Get your 2021 Annual Passes at https://t.co/PkdDFiCquK pic.twitter.com/S3lMHmzb6z
Last year Gobbler Country caught up with James following his selection in the 2020 MLS Draft. You can read that interview with him here discussing his path to Blacksburg, time playing for Virginia Tech, and looking ahead as he went pro. We followed up with James to discuss how last year went and his move to Chattanooga.
GC: Clearly it was a tough year last season to turn pro. How did that year go for you and trying out in the Sporting Kansas City system?
JK: Last year was definitely a tough year turn pro. However, I learned a lot of valuable lessons and gained experience from Sporting KC that I will use in the future.
GC: How did the opportunity with Chattanooga FC come about and what are you hoping for this season with the USL League One side?
JK: While I was on trial with a USL team last year Chattanooga noticed me and got in contact with my agent. This year with Chattanooga, I want to really continue to grow as a player and get some pro games under my belt. While doing so, I’d love to compete for some championships too.
The 2021 NISA season will kick-off with a tournament being held in Chattanooga, TN beginning April 13th, before a series of home-and-away matches, and concluding with the playoffs in Detriot, MI. Best of luck to James as he begins his professional career.