Top Stories

SBI Mid-Season MLS Defender of the Year: Jamison Olave


photo by David Bernal/

Jamison Olave has been one of the most dominant defenders in MLS since joining Real Salt Lake in 2008, and this year has been no different.

Olave has enjoyed a strong start to the first half of the 2012 campaign, helping Real Salt Lake contend for the top spot in the Western Conference with his physical style, aerial dominance and ability on the ball. He has also helped RSL on the offensive end by assisting on one goal this season, and all those factors combined have given him SBI's Mid-season MLS Defender of the Year award, which was selected by a vote of SBI staff writers.

Olave edged out a group of defenders who also have enjoyed strong years for top teams in the league. Honorable mentions go to Jay DeMerit of the Vancouver Whitecaps, Sporting Kansas City's Aurelien Collin and San Jose Earthquakes fullback Steve Beitashour.

What do you think of Olave taking SBI's Mid-Season MLS Defender of the Year award? Think it is the right call, or was someone else more deserving?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Yeah, Collin has a much higher profile, but as was evinced by his run of poor play during Besler’s recent absence due to appendicitis, Collin depends immensely on Besler.

  2. Well Geoff Cameron is drawing interest from Premier League clubs and did not even make this list. And while I am not suggesting or even implying that Valdes is bound for Europe, it wouldn’t shock me if there were teams outside of MLS keeping tabs on him.

  3. These are my top 10 so far:

    1. Carlos Valdes
    2. Matt Besler
    3. Justin Morrow

    4. Olave
    5. Bernardez
    6. Collin
    7. Hainault
    8. DeMerit
    9. Marshall
    10. Berry or Hedges

  4. Hmmmmm, if he’s so good, why is he still in MLS? Meanwhile, rumors abound for numerous defenders in MLS going to clubs in Europe. Just a thought…..

  5. I like the list, only I would have liked to see Carlos Valdes included. He has been an absolute rock for the Union during the turmoil the Union defense has faced this year:

    In no particular order:

    1. Losing former Captain Danny Califf
    2. Complete failure of Costa Rican left back signing Porfirio Lopez.
    3. Being paired up with fill in center back Amobi Okugo who is a natural defensive midfielder.
    4. Playing with rookie Raymon Gaddis who has platooned at right and left back.
    5. Captaining his team through the loss of their head coach.
    6. Leading the defense in front of 20 year old netminder Zac MacMath.

    I know I really sound like a homer and I don’t want to take away from the contributions of the other players on the Union. Just my two cents for what they are worth.

  6. Beitashour has been very good, but I think Victor Bernardez has been the Quakes’ best defender this year and deserves to be on the shortlist for best in the league.

  7. No doubt about this one. Collin and DeMerit have been fun to watch but Olave has been a defensive force this year. Without question an all-star who could start for any team in the league.

  8. as an RSL fan i would have to say that Olave does not deserve Defender of the year. The three or four seasons before this year he probably did but he hasnt been too sharp this year. I love Olave but hes having an off year this year. plus hes been injured for a good part of the season as well.

  9. Collins goals have been great, but I think most SKC fans would agree he isn’t the best CB on the team. Besler…

    Olave is a good pick, terrific player


Leave a Comment