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The Richie Award, for D.C. United's most underrated player of the year

It is awards season around B&RU, and we start off with the award for the team's most underrated player.

We kick of the 2014 edition of the Benny Awards as we always do, with the Richie Award. It is named named defensive midfielder Richie Williams, whose contributions were often overshadowed by names such as Marco Etcheverry, Raul Diaz Arce, and Jaime Moreno, but who was an important part of those early teams. Past winners of the award include Taylor Kemp, Jared Jeffrey, Chris Korb, Julius James, Bryan Namoff, and Clyde Simms.

  1. Nick DeLeon: Last season is looking more like a trend, where Nick DeLeon puts in a season that cannot be captured just by the sight test. We all still wish that he scored more goals and put in more assists. But DeLeon was second on the team in passing accuracy (82%) and was one of United's better attacking players in keeping possession.
  2. Chris Korb: Before he went down with injury, Chris Korb racked up 17 starts this season doing his normal role: speed coming out of the back, solid defensive work, but worse as an offensive threat than either Taylor Kemp or Sean Franklin.
  3. Conor Doyle: A divisive choice to be sure, but Conor Doyle grew into his role more fully this year: the late game defensive forward/winger. He averaged more tackles per game than Bobby Boswell or Steve Birnbaum, he did not lose the ball, and he had the Doyleazo in a midweek game when all the regular starters were given a day off.
  4. Sean Franklin: Franklin is another repeat member of this list, and he kind of faded out of the forebrain of D.C. United fans after he came back from injury. Always good defensively, fourth on the team in passing accuracy, and provides much more offensive ability than the other right back options on the team. He is a complete fullback, unlike anyone else currently wearing Black and Red.
  5. Davy Arnaud: Perry Kitchen's midfield partner was never flashy, but his importance was never felt as much as when he missed the end of the season with a concussion. The team was never the same with him on the bench, and people struggled to find the reason why. It wasn't the whole story, but perhaps a little part of it was Davy Arnaud.

So who gets your vote for the 2015 Richie Award?