Luke Scholes has expressed his delight at signing for Johnson & Wales University, one of the most highly regarded colleges in the United States.
Scholes, who has spent his entire youth soccer career with the prestigious SABA program at 7 Elite Academy in Salt Lake City, will join up with his new teammates in Charlotte, North Carolina this August.
The SABA 04 Boys captain was spotted by recruiters at the Johnson and Wales Wildcats after leading the SABA 04 Boys at numerous college showcase events, most recently winning the Raleigh, North Carolina Showcase, and then weeks later placing runners up at the respected and highly competitive IMG Showcase in Florida.
His player profile, created as part of the college-focused SABA program, then helped to seal the offer of a place at Johnson & Wales University.
Scholes, who has also appeared for leading semi-professional side AFC Liverpool Under-18s in the United Kingdom, said: “I feel very excited and I can’t wait to continue my career at such a prestigious university.
“I couldn’t have made it here without the amazing coaching staff and great teammates from 7 Elite Academy. I can’t thank you guys enough.
“Thanks to 7 Elite Academy I have played soccer all over the world. The coaches, especially Jean Claude Gay and Anthony Godfrey, have given me so many fantastic opportunities to develop my skills, and widen my playing horizons.
“By travelling to so many amazing college showcases all over the United States, every player in the SABA program has the opportunity to put themselves firmly in the college recruitment spotlight.”
The 7 Elite Academy SABA program provides world-class college preparation through training with UEFA A Licensed coaches and appearances at showcase events across the United States.
SABA players also receive regular college application workshops to maximize their profiles, alongside visits by recruiters from leading universities.
Jean Claude Gay, Head Coach of 7 Elite Academy SABA 04 Boys, said: “I have worked with Luke for many years and he fully deserves this opportunity with Johnson & Wales University.
“He works hard at every single training session and is a shining example of how players can make the most of their talent to achieve their ambitions.
“Luke has an excellent soccer brain and will be a fine addition to the athletic department at JWU.”
Johnson & Wales University’s Wildcats side has appeared at the USCAA National Soccer Championships twice in the last four years.
Phillip Kroft, Head Coach at JWU Soccer in Charlotte, said: “Luke Scholes's personality and adaptability will be key factors for his success.
“Luke has an impressive personality both on and off the field, and his experience adapting in multiple playing environments should aid his quick transition to the college game.
“We're excited to add his competitiveness to our already hungry group."
Anthony Godfrey, President of 7 Elite Academy, added: “We make sure that every young person has a goal, which we then help them to achieve through planning, hard work and maximizing individual talent.
“Luke has achieved one of his key goals, but he’s done that while being a fine captain for the 04 Boys and leading them to some outstanding showcase performances.
“Every player at 7 Elite Academy SABA has the same opportunity to shine on the biggest stage and create a career pathway that will serve them well for a lifetime.
“Everyone at 7 Elite Academy – whether that be at our Utah, Tanzania, or England campuses will be wishing Luke the very best as he goes on to the next level of his soccer career.
“Saba was designed to get as many players in to college as we can, and Luke’s signing is another proof of our dedication at 7 Elite Academy to do just that.”