As part of Black History Month, FC Tucson will celebrate the accomplishments of players, front office employees, and supporters of the Old Pueblo’s club. Today, we take a look at one of our very own stars: Shak Adams.
Born on Sept. 7, 1998, to parents Ruth and Lesley Adams, Shakeem “Shak” Adams grew up proudly representing his St. Vincent and the Grenadines roots. Adams, a native of Antioch, Tenn. would go onto beginning his soccer journey with his local youth club, Tennessee SC under coach Sandy Pollock. The years that followed would be just the beginning of the many accomplishments that Adams would claim.
“In my neighborhood in Antioch Tennessee, not a lot of people play soccer - a lot of the sports were basketball and football,” said Adams. “They kind of knew that I was one of the best players around my area. My dad would have me go out and train when I was very young. Just me wanting to be better than he was.”
During his youth, Adams scored 15 goals and added nine assists as a midfielder for Cane Ridge HS in Nashville and was named AAA Offensive MVP in District 12, ODP Interregional All-Star Team, and Top Draw Soccer Atlanta Combine Boys Best XI.
After graduation, Adams earned his shot to shine at the next level and joined Florida Gulf Coast University’s NCAA Division I men’s soccer program. This would mark the beginning of dominance against other talented adult athletes, etching his name in the program record book as the all-time assists leader (16), tied for most game-winning goals (eight), and second all-time in goals (23). During the NCAA offseason, Adams played in USL League Two with Nashville SC U23s and Seattle Sounders U23s.
Shak’s hometown of Nashville took notice of The Atlantic Sun Conference action the speedy forward stirred during his four seasons at FGCU. The US and St. Vincent and the Grenadines dual national was selected by Nashville SC with the second pick in the Third Round of the 2020 MLS SuperDraft. Although released following his participation in the club’s preseason, Adams had impressed many clubs throughout the United Soccer League (USL) ranks. His signing with FC Tucson soon followed in February of 2020. In his professional debut season with the Men in Black, Adams featured in 12 matches with 9 starts, leading the club with 4 goals and tied for the 9th spot in USL League One for goals scored.
Now in 2021, his story will continue and many should be hard-pressed to see what he will accomplish in just his second professional season. Adams’ will not let his limits be decided by anyone but himself, and he is driven by a goal of excellence.
“Black excellence: Never be limited by other people’s standards,” as Adams better said.