Looks Like 13 Teams (Again) In USL Pro

With the official word yesterday that Antigua Barracuda FC has gone to the great beyond, it appears as though USL Pro will again field 13 teams in 2014. They won’t be the same 13 that played in 2013, though. New clubs in Oklahoma City and Sacramento replace the departed Barracuda and (apparently) VSI Tampa Bay (whose demise has not been officially announced yet). With Phoenix saved from oblivion (for now), the league will apparently line up like this:

Charleston Battery
Charlotte Eagles
Dayton Dutch Lions
Harrisburg City Islanders
Los Angeles Blues
Oklahoma City Energy
Orlando City
Phoenix FC Wolves
Pittsburgh Riverhounds
Richmond Kickers
Rochester Rhinos
Sacramento Republic FC
Wilmington Hammerheads

There was talk of an FC Dallas reserve team in the league in 2014, but FCD opted not to pull the trigger on it. The Galaxy’s rumored reserve team is the last remaining piece (as is whether they would replace or merely eventually drive the LA Blues into the ground).

Orlando is on the way out in 2015, but Colorado Springs and Tulsa will join then, along with (potentially) several MLS reserve sides.

Last year the USL Pro schedule came out on January 24, so we shouldn’t be too long from knowing exactly which teams will make up the third division in 2014. The last time we had more than 13 third-division clubs was 2002, when 18 teams played in what was then known as the D3 Pro League.

4 thoughts on “Looks Like 13 Teams (Again) In USL Pro”

  1. Hi Kenn – appreciate all the effort. Didn’t USL-Pro have 15 teams their first year or or are you considering that year to only have 12 teams after the PR teams departed (iI believe the teams did play and participate in the beginning)? They “HAD” more than 13, just didn’t “END UP” with more than 13.

    1. Yeah, that’s a Choose Your Own Adventure type deal. If you want to consider them to have had 15, even though they went 71% of the season without those three squirrelly teams, you certainly can. In my list of number of teams at each level per year, I make that distinction with a note.

      You are certainly free to consider them to have had 15, and there have been other years where teams started a season and did not complete it (though it’s been a while), but not many I can think of who were ( a ) an obvious train wreck from the get-go and ( b ) gone so quickly.

      Do what you like. We’ll see how it plays out going forward.

  2. Thanks! Agreed that lower division soccer in the US is an ADVENTURE….., but I do get the feeling that things from a stability standpoint are a bit on the upswing. Maybe USSF could mandate that Peter Holt (or others like him) have to sign off on the viability of any new ownership and their expansion model…..hey – we can all dream….

  3. I don’t know who Peter Holt is.

    Division II owners are already required to meet with USSF staff before taking over a team. It would be helpful if Division III owners were similarly vetted.

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