With the regular season just over a month away and preseason well underway, Columbus Crew SC released an updated roster with each player’s number for 2017.
This list is usually of interest to fans, to see if anyone made any changes to their number from the previous year.
If fact, one Crew SC player did. Ola Kamara, who wore 17 a year ago, will sport No. 11 moving forward. This number was worn by Cedrick Mabwat last season, but he was not brought back to the team.
Kamara’s vacated number is now worn by the Black & Gold’s first-overall pick Lalas Abubakar, a central defender.
As for the rest of the new players, most of them they take on numbers left open by departed guys.
Wingback Jukka Raitala will wear No. 2, formerly Tyson Wahl’s, center-back Jonathan Mensah takes Michael Parkhurst’s No. 4 and rookie Alex Crognale has No. 21 vacated by Chad Barson.
Defender Josh Williams, who is in his second stint with Columbus, will wear No. 3, the same number he wore for the club from 2010-14 which became open when Corey Ashe was not retained.
In the midfield, Mohammed Abu does a like-for-like switch with former central midfielder Mohammed Saeid by taking over the No. 8. Second-overall pick Niko Hansen will wear No. 28 and recent signing Abuchi Obinwa gets No. 27.
Rookie forward Connor Maloney and goalkeeper Logan Ketterer don’t have numbers assigned to them yet as they are unsigned by the club.
Of note, neither goalkeeper Brad Stuver (41) nor Zack Steffen (23) — a number he told me last year he did not pick — switched to the typical goalie No. 1 vacated by Steve Clark’s departure.
Perhaps neither shot stopper was interested in the lowest digit or maybe there’s another goalkeeper on the way...
While the numbers are out, fans still await word from the club on what the new uniforms will look like for 2017. It is known the gold kit, which was only used on occasion as a third jersey a year ago, will return this season and it is expected that not many changes will be made to either jersey this year.
Also, the team is yet to announce the new kit sponsor. After four years, the partnership with Barbasol ended following the 2016 season and was not renewed, although the club did express excitement about what they were working on near the end of last year.
Here is the full list of player numbers from Columbus Crew SC: