Mickey Kydes with U.S. international midfielder Benny Feilhaber. (Photo courtesy of Arnie Ramirez)

Former Long Island University Brooklyn Campus standout Mickey Kydes will be honored at the fifth annual New York City Soccer Gala at the New York Athletic Club Wednesday night.

An inductee in the LIU Brooklyn Athletic Hall of Fame, Kydes capped off a decade-long professional career in 1996, playing 11 games in Major League Soccer’s inaugural season with the New York/New Jersey MetroStars.

Former LIU men’s head soccer coach Arnie Ramirez recently remembered Kydes’ impact as a player and a person on and off the field.

“When I got the news about Mickey Kydes being honored at the New York City Soccer Gala I was so happy,” he said. “I have known Mickey since October 1981 when I went to see him play for Norwalk High School. Of the 22 players on the field No. 6 stood out right away. He was elegant playing. As he dribbled he was always looking around to give the killer pass.

“For an American-born player he had all the skills, felt comfortable with the ball, made beautiful passes and could shoot with either foot. I was saying to myself while watching him, he could fit in nicely with my team. Mickey wore No. 6 in high school and at LIU because his favorite player was Franz Beckenbauer. He attended LIU from September 1982 to June 1986 graduating with a Bachelor’s degree in marketing.”

Kydes recorded 34 goals and 35 assists at LIU, which registered a 58-16-7 mark during his four-year tenure.

Ramirez remembered when his Blackbirds played the University of Connecticut in the Elite Eight of the NCAA tournament after being unbeaten in 22 games in 1982. “Close to 8,000 attended the game on a very cold afternoon,” he said.

In 1983 LIU defeated the University of Virginia, 3-1, as Kydes scored twice.

“Mickey had an outstanding game and Bruce Arena [then UVA coach] was quoted as saying that Mickey should be on the national team,” Ramirez said. “He also said that we {LIU} beat them with a lazy man’s defense. We caught them offside many, many times.

Kydes went on to play professionally with the Dallas Sidekicks in the Major Indoor Soccer League and spent three seasons playing in Greece and the MetroStars.

He is the owner of Mickey Kydes Soccer Enterprises and started the Beachside Soccer Club of Connecticut. Ramirez noted that some of Kydes’ former players included Benny Feilhaber, Kyle Martino and Wake Forest University sensation and Missouri Athletic Club Hermann Trophy award winner Marcus Tracy.

Front Row Soccer editor Michael Lewis has covered 13 World Cups (eight men, five women), seven Olympics and 25 MLS Cups. He has written about New York City FC, New York Cosmos, the New York Red Bulls and both U.S. national teams for Newsday and has penned a soccer history column for the Guardian.com. Lewis, who has been honored by the Press Club of Long Island and National Soccer Coaches Association of America, is the former editor of BigAppleSoccer.com. He has written seven books about the beautiful game and has published ALIVE AND KICKING The incredible but true story of the Rochester Lancers. It is available at Amazon.com.