CHICAGO — U.S. Soccer announced Wednesday that it was launching the Spring College Program in collaboration with six Division I men’s soccer programs.
Starting in March, the six college programs will face one another over the course of seven weeks, culminating with an event at Wake Forest University April 21.
The six Division I programs participating are: Clemson, Duke, Georgetown, North Carolina, Virginia and Wake Forest.
The collaborative initiative between U.S. Soccer and the college soccer programs will provide standards-based competition and further player development opportunities for players above the age of 17. The games also provide an additional opportunity for U.S. Soccer Scouts to identify potential U.S. Olympic and national team players and expand the player pool.
“We are excited about this program and the role it will play in helping college soccer become more connected to the player development pathway,” U.S. Soccer youth technical director and Under-20 men’s national team head coach Tab Ramos said in a statement. “It provides us with additional opportunities to identify more players for youth national teams and for the Olympic Team in an environment that mirrors the international game.”
The program will see international standards implemented in each of the 15 games played. The rules for each game played will function similarly to U.S. Soccer Development Academy standards. Games will be played with traditional time keeping, a maximum game day roster of 18 players and no re-entry.
During the first six weeks, each college will host two games on their respective campus before closing out the program with a three-match event that features all six teams hosted at Wake Forest University. Upon the conclusion of the round-robin schedule, the team with the most points will be crowned champion.
“The opportunity for us to work directly with college programs will benefit players, coaches and referees at critical stages of their development,” U.S. Soccer Development Academy director Jared Micklos said. “This program will utilize standards to impact the college soccer game as we collectively work to evolve the sport at all ages and levels in our country.”
2018 U.S. Soccer Spring College Program Game Schedule
|March 4||North Carolina||Clemson|
|March 24||Georgetown||North Carolina|
|March 29||Wake Forest||Duke|
|April 7||North Carolina||Virginia|
|April 8||Georgetown||Wake Forest|
|Wake Forest||North Carolina|