A new league...

Discussion in 'MLS: General' started by jri, Nov 12, 2003.

  1. jri

    jri Red Card

    Sep 28, 2000
    OK, only an idea...

    Florida only, winter outdoor league (mid-Nov thru Feb.)

    Games 2 and 3 times a week (Fri./Sun/Wed)....Wed games could be internationals/exhibitions

    Teams comprised on young MLS or bench players (about 1/2 of most rosters)...players who want/need more minutes....A-League too

    5 Cities: Miami, Ftl, West Palm, Orlando, Tampa, Naples/Ft. Myers. Maybe Jax (6th) and/or Space Coast (Melbourne, etc.)

    Ray Hudson becomes commissioner of MLS Winter League (after not re-upping with DC)

    In Dec/Jan- You can schedule exhibitions against Euro clubs on holiday.....train together (further expose Euros to young American talent)

    Top 2 table teams play in final in late Feb....MLS adjusts training camps to accomodate..

    Pay the players little (after all....it is to keep them sharp).....market the hell out of it, so average attendence is in 3-4k range....I think you could break even with proper promotion, selling of league/team names, etc.

    If fatigue a concern, expand rosters to include top local amateurs, so that some players only playing once a week...

    If money an issue, you can set-up 20somethings with local jobs (to help pay bills)...

    Given geography, this would be "get in the van and drive" league- so travel costs low. Also, with Fri night/Sunday game schedule, I don't think 3-4k a game is unrealistic..

    Final controversial idea: Have players buy an investment unit- that they re-sell the next year (to another player...or keep and play themselves)...so players have ownership in league, and help fund it (if there is a funding gap)..Players share any profits from league...

    Alright, so at least I didn't propose a futsball league in Texas...
  2. masterklh

    masterklh New Member

    Oct 21, 2003
    I think Florida has already proved twice that it can not host teams, Nevermind a league of its own.

    As for your players buying and selling etc.. The players you are talking about that play in this league make 24,000$ dollars a year. They hardly have extra money to throw around and be paying for ownership in the league.
  3. jri

    jri Red Card

    Sep 28, 2000
    The investment unit concept not fully fleshed out, but maybe one applies it to 1/2 the roster.....top ranking amateurs dying (not literally) to get on the pitch vs. already pros....say, you have 8-10 of those per squad...that are willing to pony up $5-10,000k to play along side top competition...for a chance to get "spotted" and play full-time professional...or maybe just for kicks (pun intended)...I think you could find 8-10 top amateurs (in each area) willing to "pay to play" to keep dreams alive....especially since it would be resellable right (like fractional jet, etc.)

    6 clubs x 8 players x $7,500 per player....around $350k in start-up funds, which may just be enough to plug gap...maybe one puts funds in trust, and if league can't be managed profitability first year...it is risk capital to newbies...

    Hey, rich guys been footing the bills for years for league....nothing wrong with sharing a little risk...as you can see, I would want to operate league on 0 loss budget basis...
  4. yellowbismark

    yellowbismark Member+

    Nov 7, 2000
    San Diego, CA
    Club Tijuana
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I think it's a great idea. And had a similar one to it myself, except instead of a Florida winter league, a southern regional (winter) league. Nevertheless something along the lines of the NBDL or Puerto Rico winter baseball. It's great for the south since they are not at all represented by MLS teams, and is somewhat of a bone for the Florida after axing their two teams. And it would be good for marginal MLS and A-league players to hone their skills alongside aspiring amateurs during the offseason. It might even work as a combine of sorts for graduating college players.

    You can add places like Memphis, Charleston, Cary-NC, Atlanta, Birmingham, (either places that show promise or have SSSs). Maybe making a regional league would add extra burden on travel costs, but it would neat to see something like that. Make it a short schedule, each team plays each other twice, that sort of thing.

    Here would be my offer:

    Ft.Lauderdale, Orlando, Tampa Bay, Jacksonville, Cary-NC, Charleston, Memphis, Birmingham,
  5. mactheknife

    mactheknife New Member

    Aug 2, 2002
    Baton Rouge, LA
    Chicago Fire
    seems like a decent idea, but i dont like the concept of being contained in only one state.
  6. jri

    jri Red Card

    Sep 28, 2000
    For revenue/cost purposes, you almost have to contain it to one state..

    First, in the winter, Florida will have above 50 degree weather...that is (basically) guaranteed...you can not say same for Memphis/NC...your attendence at a 35 degree or less in winter (basically minor league) game will be poor in Memphis or NC, and it would be poor conditions to play in...

    2nd, travel costs......with extended (states) league...you are talking airplanes, much higher costs..

    3rd, in order to make economic sense, you need to play on Fri/Sun, capture 2 weekend dates...it would be too much to play (for players) on Friday, and then travel 6-8 hours (or more) on a Saturday.....not a big deal to play an away match in Naples on Friday, and home in Ft. Lauderdale on Sunday...

    Within Florida makes most sense, although I can understand why folks in other areas would like to have a "bite of the cherry"..
  7. Sempuukyaku

    Sempuukyaku Member+

    Apr 30, 2002
    Seattle, WA
    Seattle Sounders
    Nat'l Team:
    United States

    I think it's an okay idea....but not necessarily a good one. There's no need to have two leagues when Florida teams can just play in the regular MLS with all the other teams. I used to live in Miami when the Fusion were around, and even though it gets REALLY hot in S. Florida during summer, it's gorgeous outside at night. I don't remember one Fusion game that was played before 6:30-7:00. By that time it was much cooler out and far more enjoyable. Just play all the games at night and you'll be fine.

    Bring back Miami, keep Tampa Bay out, add Orlando instead.

    With the RIGHT I/O, a Miami location (not Ft. Lauderdale), and a better front office, the Fusion will shine again and kick ass while they're at it. Their last year was the year that they started to show their potential as a club and a market, let's show Miami fans that we saw that and bring them back into the family.
  8. FlashMan

    FlashMan Member

    Jan 6, 2000
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I don't know the merits or the ins and outs of the ideas behind the league, but if it comes to fruitiion, it should be held in the Southwest (so I can see the games :D ):

    Anaheim, San Diego, Pamona/Claremont, Santa Monica, Riverside/San Bernadino and maybe Fresno (or Tuscon or somewhere).

    Like I said, therefore I would be able to watch a bunch of games in the Winter and wouldn't have to jones so much between Nov. and late March.
  9. jri

    jri Red Card

    Sep 28, 2000
    I've been on record that a 25k soccer-only stadium near Orange Bowl/Miami River (which would host an MLS team, international exhibitions, etc) combined with a Latin American Sports Hall of Fame and/or Latin Sports Bar in facility would be great and work (financially)...

    But, outside of the nebelous Real Miami proposal...doesn't seem to be anything in the works..

    So, the Florida Winter League may be your best bet for now...and if Miami ever got another allocation (team), then just drop Miami but keep rest of Florida Winter League going...
  10. texgator

    texgator New Member

    Oct 28, 2003
    I think its an interesting idea, if anything. Heck, if it works you can expand it and each team could be affiliated with an MLS squad. Sort of like MLB's spring training, only with scaled down/developmental rosters. I would think you would want to avoid Jax, maybe even Orlando. Keep the teams within 3 hours drive time of each other so that travelling is real easy. It might be too high a concentration of teams in one area, but if you can do it on the cheap its probably worth a try.
  11. billf

    billf Member+

    May 22, 2001
    Philadelphia Union
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I think it sounds like an interesting idea, but it would be hard to get anyone to pony up a lot of money to miss work to play.

    I don't see why a self contained league in a small area would be a bad thing. Why not go one step further and have a decond league in So-Cal as well. Have two six team leagues play 20 games/team over 10 weeks. It's a cool concept if nothing else. It would be good for the game here on so many levels.
  12. jri

    jri Red Card

    Sep 28, 2000
    Nobody would miss work...games at night.....(except Sun?)...practices could be arranged at night too...allowing players to work during day to pay bills (both MLS 24kers and "amateurs" who make the cut)...

    7-10k is hardly an expensive offer, given it allows one to "chase one's dream" and it is resellable...after all, how much is college these days? Or any training program? You are going to pay something AND NOT BE GIVEN JOB GUARANTEE in return...hell, I'm sure some sort of loan scheme could be worked out too...

    I want a financially responsible league, that all...tired of hearing about red ink/soccer

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