Commenter Stu tracks down a former Minnesota sports figure so you don't have to wonder what happened to them anymore. Stu?


The Hunt Down


Name: Alan Willey
Nickname: The Artful Dodger
Claim to Fame, Minnesota: as the Bernardo Brito and Mike Fetters Hunt Downs may have indicated, the Hunt Down is running low on past local athletes to feature. We have done over 100 of these pieces, so it stands to reason that the cupboards are emptying. Fortunately, we’ve received multiple requests for more soccer coverage, which brings us to former Minnesota Kicks star Alan Willey (pictured, right). The Englishman was a striker for the state’s first professional soccer team (local soccer guru Brian Quarstad has posted some tremendous photos of Willey and the 1978 squad). The high point of his career was likely the five goals he scored in a playoff game against the New York Cosmos. The Strib story on that game is also worth reading.
Claim to Fame, Everywhere Else: started his career with Middlesborough FC in Great Britain, and also played for the Montreal Manic (what?) and the Minnesota Strikers indoor soccer team. Was inducted into the National Soccer Hall of Fame in 2003.
Where He Is Now: per this interview on the “US Soccer Players” website, he still lives in Bloomington, and a Bloomington-based company lists an Alan Willey as their IT Director, so it’s fair to say he remains ONE OF US.
Is He on Twitter: not verified, but I give it a “probably.”
Glorious Randomness: would you like to watch the first seven minutes of the 1978 Tulsa/Minnesota playoff game? I recommend it, if only for Bob Carpenter’s outstanding blazer/tie/haircut combo.

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