What is the NPL?
The NPL was created to elevate and change the competitive youth soccer landscape by extending developmental principles espoused by U.S. Soccer into more age groups and clubs, by linking competition with player development and identification platforms, and by providing meaningful weekly competition culminating in the NPL Finals.
NPLs are independent leagues, unified under one national competition platform, and based on a common technical framework designed to improve long-term player development.
The NPL provides a platform:
Which NPL is in our region?
The new Red River NPL will launch in the Fall 2017. We are excited to announce that each OPC Member Club has been accepted into the Red River National Premier League (NPL). Each club will field a B&G team in the U13,U14,U15,U16,U17 and U18/19 age groups. Since the NPL is a national league platform that offers some of the highest level competition in the nation, teams will have an opportunity to qualify for the NPL post season playoffs based on their league standings.
What other clubs are in the Red River NPL?
To date the clubs that have been accepted into the Red River NPL are:
Arkansas United (AR)
Arkansas Comets (AR)
Dallas City FC (NTX)
Dallas Fever (NTX)
FC Wichita (KS)
Liverpool America FC Academy (NTX)
Mighty Bluebirds (AR)
North Texas Celtic (NTX)
Oklahoma Celtic (OK)
South Lakes SC (OK)
Sporting Arkansas (AR)
TSC Hurricane (OK)
West Side Alliance SC (OK)
What happens to the teams participating in SRPL?
There has and continues to be considerable change in the competitive league landscape for elite teams across the country. OPC member clubs have carefully researched the current state and future direction of the USY platforms vs the NPL and determined that the NPL offers the best platform for our players now and into the future. The NPL will be the primary platform for their eligible teams.
What is the OPC?
Several leading clubs in Oklahoma are making a bold move by joining forces to develop innovative programming for all OPC members focusing on higher quality services, organizational effectiveness and expanded opportunities from a player, coach and referee development perspective. All programming will be sanctioned by US Club Soccer. The OPC will be designed to compliment the NPL from a player development and competition platform perspective.
GOAL: The goal of the OPC is to change the landscape for soccer players in Oklahoma and surrounding region through innovative, player-centered programming and to enhance the overall experience by creating a better, more enjoyable, and more successful player, coach, and club development model.
IMPLEMENTATION: The OPC is led by a Board comprised of Technical Directors of the founding member clubs. Day-to-day operations are managed by the League Commissioner of PrimeTime Sports.
The OPC has four primary platforms:
Why the NPL and OPC?
The leaders of these clubs looked at the current and future direction of Oklahoma soccer and determined that for us to be able to Raise the Game to a level that is needed for player success, radical change was needed. OPC feels that clubs develop players and therefore should be empowered to shape programs that they feel is best for long-term player development. As leaders in the soccer community, these forward-thinking clubs have decided to work together by taking the major step of creating an innovative new platform for the betterment of the game in Oklahoma and the surrounding region. The platform we create will be a well-thought out vision and plan that will allow the game to take a major leap forward for today’s and tomorrow’s generation of players.
Does this mean the NPL and OPC member teams will no longer be in OSA/USY? Why?
NPL and OPC will be the primary competitive platform for their teams, coaches and referees so that the programming formats and calendar can be better coordinated from a player development perspective. OPC programming will also bring the clubs more closely in alignment with US Soccer Developmental Academy and ECNL standards and recommendations.
Is this happening only in Oklahoma or in other parts of the country as well?
Around the country and as close as Texas, there is a trend of like-minded clubs coming together to develop programming sanctioned by US Club. (View United Soccer Clubs as an example.) These OPC clubs decided now is the time to be forward thinking and take the lead in unifying the soccer community around a common platform. (View other Premier Leagues.)
OPC member clubs believe the NPL offers a higher level of organization, quality and consistency of competition than is available with other platforms.
What will be the costs?
The costs for the league programming will be comparable to what teams currently pay but with enhanced levels of competition opportunities, exposure and value-added professional services.
What will the league format, schedule and travel be like?
The Red River NPL will consist of 10-12 quality clubs stretching from North Texas to Kansas and Arkansas. League travel would be expected to be about the same (or less) than what SRPL teams experience. A year long schedule will include approximately 18-24 games and be structured so that age groups play at the same time thereby avoiding coach conflicts and providing proper periodization with respect to meaningful game-to-training ratios. Additional NPL exclusive showcases and cross-conference events will also be additional opportunities for NPL teams.
What about a State Cup and Regional Competition for those that earned it?
NPL and OPC will offer a year end State Cup for multiple levels with advancement opportunities to US Club’s post season competitions including National Cup/Regional Cup (Team Based) and NPL Playoffs (League Based) based on their league standings. More details to follow.
How will the NPL be managed?
The Red River NPL will be professionally managed by PrimeTime Sports. PrimeTime Sports is a leading event sports management company with years of successful experience in the highly competitive Texas market.
Will NPL have an “ODP” program?
The Red River NPL will offer an ODP program as part of US Club’s ID2/PDP ODP programs.
An NPL Scouting Network comprised of coaches from NPL member clubs will be created where a Player ID process will be implemented as part of the everyday natural environment of the player.
Will there be promotion and relegation between the NPL and OPC Division 1?
Players from each club will have the opportunity to “Club Pass” from OPC teams into the NPL. The Red River NPL will be comprised of each respective club’s top teams each season (outside of ECNL/National League) in the U13, U14, U15, U16, U17 and U18/19 age groups.
Will players/teams be allowed to play up?
Yes. Players will be allowed to play up with the decisions coming from each respective Club Technical Director.
When will NPL tryouts be scheduled?
NPL tryout information and signing process will be announced in the coming weeks.
Will we still play at our home complex?
The Red River NPL will employ a home-and-away model so your home league matches will continue to be at your home complex. There may also be matches held at neutral sites where it makes sense from a travel perspective. NPL/OPC member clubs have access to the best and largest home club complexes in Oklahoma. In addition, there are multi-million dollar investments planned or underway at the Norman, Indian Springs, MTSC, Rivercity, South Lakes and Owasso complexes that will provide significant enhancements for OPC members in the future
How will this affect our participation in tournaments?
NPL teams will continue to have the option of participating in any open sanctioned US Club or US Youth tournament. There will also be exclusive NPL Showcase opportunities for those teams as another added benefit. NPL/OPC Member hosted tournaments will be sanctioned through US Club Soccer and be completely open and fully insured for all US Youth, USSSA or US Club teams to participate.
Will the players be covered under insurance?
NPL Member Clubs certification through Players First program through US Club Soccer.
Extensive Risk Management process through US Club soccer.
Supplement Medical Insurance Coverage is included.
What other clubs and leagues are in the NPL?
The majority of the best clubs from across the USA are in the NPL. More information about the Clubs and leagues in the NPL can be found here: NPL League Footprint.
I am a coach and very excited about this. How can I join?
The tremendous excitement of the NPL and the OPC will undoubtedly generate a lot of interest from coaches and teams wanting to join. Individual teams or coaches wanting to participate would need to join an OPC member club.
Can we do both NPL and other leagues?
NPL will be the primary platform for member clubs offering enhanced competition and opportunities in a coordinated annual calendar format with post season qualifying opportunities. Therefore, it would not be feasible or beneficial for a team to try and participate in additional leagues.
The coalescence of the state’s top clubs and leaders under one banner, the creation of a platform that empowers and encourages diverse thought, ideas and vision, and the support of and respect for grass roots leaders reflected in every aspect of the league’s structure and governance will create a better environment for change, growth and success. The creation of this platform for ALL levels of competitive soccer makes it even more powerful. We are excited about the future, and we are thankful for the opportunities that we have before us. Thanks to all the players, parents, coaches, referees, volunteers and supporters for your vision and courage, to stand by us as we work toward taking the steps necessary for the benefit of the next generation of the game.