Midwest Conference League (formerly MRL)

Discussion in 'Youth & HS Soccer' started by VolklP19, Nov 12, 2018.

  1. VolklP19

    VolklP19 Member

    Jun 23, 2010
    This was our first year participating in MRL and we played in Prem2. I was able to see some Prem 1 games as well and I have to say that after many years playing in the NPL (on the girls side), that I was very impressed.

    The there was some really good teams that were clearly way above the best teams in the IWSL A division but just under some teams I have seen in ECNL and DA - so very well placed in the ladder of girls soccer IMO.

    Above that the schedules were very nice - instead of jamming in 2 games a week, our schedule had us off on multiple weekends which allowed my kid to also play with some high school girls as well as local friends. So we got in soccer but without all that travel every week.

    When we traveled for games, my daughter and I spent the ride home exploring - seeing museums, state parks, national monuments, checking out potential campsites for next summer and visiting relatives. Solid time with my girl that I could not love more!

    It's a shame that NISL keeps plugging the NPL on the girls side that seems to be sinking year after year in terms of talent and numbers. I would be great too see teams top A teams, some Club Open and NPL teams compete in conference qualifiers and move up into the upper ranks of the National League platform. I think over time - such a league may equate to a solid competition and some nice matches.
  2. SpiceBoy

    SpiceBoy Member

    United States
    Aug 2, 2017
    I think the big problem is that different regional areas (and even different states) are too invested in their own leagues. For example US Club NPL on the girls side is newer and not that great in Illinois, but on the East coast and some degree West coast Girls NPL is the long established "regional' league and USYS is the newcomer dividing up the market and watering down the regional leagues. There they would take your statement above, and say it is a shame USYS keeps plugging their regional league and are making the overall landscape worse/watered down.

    I think the new MRL (I guess it would be USYSNLMWC = USYS N(ational)L(eague)M(id)W(est)C(onference)?) is a great format. Promotion and Relegation through different divisions, and more importantly the new Regional Showcase is fantastic. The Regional Showcase has been needed for so long, and they are finally doing it. The big problem is that it is too late, the environment is too watered down.

    And I think Ill just keep calling it the "new MRL" for now ;). Maybe MWC will eventually work even though there is already an ECNL Midwest Conference (but nobody calls the ECNL conference MWC) Ahh just noticed your title for the thread maybe MCL?
  3. VolklP19

    VolklP19 Member

    Jun 23, 2010
    Yes I agree but would add that everything is essentially watered down.

    Good point on the East coast NPL - was not aware of that.

    As a whole maybe base leagues (IWSL) should cap the spend on C and D teams to half - what they should be for parents since they are glorified rec anyhow.

    Get rid of Club Open and A/B and start promoting up to MRL (which I am calling in now as well cause no one knows what the hell MCL is.

    NPL will die (I think) in Illinois. It's a B-A/B division and it keeps getting worse and worse year by year in terms of competition.

    Not sure if any of this makes sense - it's been a day and I still have soccer driving up to 930PM tonight. Then it's cocktail time - if I don't fall asleep.
  4. ppierce34

    ppierce34 Member

    Aug 29, 2016
    Fort Wayne, IN
    How does the travel compare to ECNL?
  5. VolklP19

    VolklP19 Member

    Jun 23, 2010
    I cannot speak for ECNL but we were in Prem 2 and were in Rockford one weekend for 2 games. Aurora one weekend for two games, Grand Rapids for two games and St Louis for 2 games.

    What I liked was that on multiple weekends we had off - so we could do other things. Some teams (Team Chicago) also played in Club Open and I believe we are going to be doing that as well for Spring. Club Open is a nice touch as you can play 3 or more games and schedule them with opposing teams. Sort of a way to run friendlies IMO.

    So overall I really liked the format - far better then playing exclusively in the NPL or Club Open or Div A (IWSL) where the competition is low.

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