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Saturday, March 5, 2011

It’s Time for Texas to Have its Own Pro Soccer League

Originally posted December 22, 2009

**Phil Rawlins, team owner of the Austin Aztex, take note. 
As one of the only stable entities left in USL and someone who has the rare affiliation with a professional team outside the United States (Stoke City), Rawlins is someone who carries clout at a time when pro Soccer is at one of its most unsettling moments.  A players strike is looming for one league and the other two (USL Div. 1 and the NASL) leagues are trying to figure out whether they will play a 2010 schedule.  USL Div. 2 will play 2010 with what appears to be only 6 teams, all from the Eastern part of the U.S.
It’s the perfect time for the 7 PDL teams from Texas to seek one more team ownership for San Antonio and come together to form their own league.  They should ensure their success by complimenting their men’s teams with a women’s league.  Both the men’s and women’s teams of each city/area can use the same team colors and can travel together to give fans a doubleheader for all regular season games. 

Texas may be the only state that could be successful with its own pro Soccer league.  The only other ones with a chance to accomplish it would be Florida or California.  But, a close look at each state’s current infrastructure puts Texas out in front.  Though youth Soccer is strong in Florida and California, it may be strongest in Texas. 

Also, quite a few of these Mid South PDL teams have been around a while and have lots of fans who support them from year to year. 

Laredo is a big competitor every year for the PDL title, winning it once.  The El Paso Patriots have an enormous history as far as Soccer teams go in the U.S.  They were founded in 1989, made the U.S. Open Cup final in 1995 and have been playing in a soccer-specific stadium since 2005.  And, the West Texas United (from Midland, Texas) seems solid as they made a big splash in their inaugural season of 2009, making the playoffs. 

There are two Texas mottos that seem to always stand out.  ‘Don’t Mess with Texas’ and ‘Everything’s Bigger in Texas.’  Do these mottoes hold true for Soccer too? 

For these 7 owners, it’s time to take a deeper look at the possibility of forming an all Texas pro Soccer league. 

It seems that if they only want to be part of the USL’s base, than they are selling themselves short when it comes to the bottom line of making money.  Starting their own league and pulling their resources together without the middle man would create more possible revenue from new franchises and all other marketing efforts.

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