Saturday, May 25, 2013
Can Openly Gay Player Spark Interest for MLS?
Rogers played a significant part in winning a national championship in college and an MLS championship with the Columbus Crew a few years back.
MLS is in desperate need of a jolt to put more attention on the League. In the American sports scene, MLS tends to get lost in the shuffle. Its not one of the best Soccer leagues in the world and many American soccer fans won't settle for it.
Especially without Beckham, the League is floundering some.
Rogers can bring some glamour back that went out when Beckham left. A gay player excelling in the League and scoring goals could be compelling sports news that no other American sports league will offer.
Jason Collins is a bench player if he makes a team next season in the NBA. Soon, Rogers will be in the starting eleven for the premier glamour team, the LA Galaxy.
Why would a gay player create interest and is the interest only within the gay community?
The excitement would be in seeing somebody different possibly dominating a skilled, aggressive male team sport. The intrigue surpasses just the gay community. The masses would want to see, too.
If Rogers can dominate at some levels and propel the Galaxy to more titles, he may be some of the answer the League is currently looking for. He could become the posterboy for the League.
He doesn't have the classic Beckham set play boots, but he is only in his mid-twenties and has time to keep improving his game. Also, the charisma of Rogers will surely develop as the cameras stay on him and endorsements come in.
MLS has searched for so long, almost twenty years, for an American identity. It's been an uphill battle for MLS trying to combat the omnipresence of better soccer leagues around the world and the dominance of baseball, football and basketball in America.
There are still skeptics out there wondering how solid the League is.
It would be ironic for a gay player to help carry this League. But, Rogers has come along and now maybe MLS can find more of an American niche.