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The 2024 Pre-Professional Soccer Season

Last year, we had our first major recruiting class go over to the United States and settle into life in the US College System. We pride ourselves on educating families on the US college system, and the pathways that it provides. Before we sit down and engage with a new family, we send through a College Soccer Tutorial video. This video highlights what to expect on a college scholarship, the different associations, the calendar year, hidden costs, and the professional/pre-professional pathways on offer.

 

When you look at football here in Australia, some clubs only train twice a week and can play 30 games a season. This has only recently been increased on the previous 20 or so matches that used to be played in the National Premier League structure. In essence, it’s not enough soccer to make that jump to the next level. That’s why we love promoting the US College Pathway. Our team of ex-collegiate athletes has had first-hand experience, training every day, traveling across the country, and utilizing the fantastic facilities that the US college system has to offer. One of our founders, Sam Jarrett had the pleasure of combining his soccer career at Whitworth University and playing at the pre-professional level with Spokane Shadow in the NPSL.


"The pre-professional leagues features 3 major associations, USL2, NPSL, and UPSL, boasting over 600 teams across the country. The season is structured around your college season during the summer months, allowing athletes to compete in both college and the pre-professional system simultaneously."


The Pre-Professional soccer system sits at the bottom of the professional pyramid in the US. The professional system offers three tiers of competition and has over 60 professional soccer teams. The pre-professional leagues sit directly underneath that, in essentially the fourth tier. You have 3 major associations, USL2, NPSL, and UPSL, boasting over 600 teams across the country. The season is structured around your college season during the summer months, allowing athletes to compete in both college and the pre-professional system simultaneously. All the best college soccer players, compete at this level and it often leads to exposure and further opportunities in the professional system post-college.




 

These teams are scattered across the country and offer players a unique opportunity to train every day and play an extra season of soccer, which could consist of up to 20 games. Some of these teams can pull in monster crowds, giving you that professional feel of playing in front of thousands of fans every week. This year, we were lucky enough to have 7 of our SCA athletes compete at this level. This is a testament to the hard work and consistent performances our lads have put in throughout their college season.


We were instrumental in securing places for several of our athletes, whilst some of them sourced these opportunities themselves. In running order, we have Elliott Forestier of SIUE (NCAA DI) and Hugo Cornish of William Penn (NAIA) both competing for Kalamazoo FC in Michigan. Kalamazoo is a top team in the USL2, and both boys were lucky enough to have accommodation and meals provided for the duration of the season by the club. Next up we have Alex Morris, who had a standout season with the College of Staten Island (DII) and has been asked to play for Staten Island ASC, in their inaugural USL2 season. This is an exciting time for Alex, as he gets to make his stamp on a brand-new club. We then move back towards Chicago, where we have Cooper Kerridge of Roberts Wesleyan (DII) and Eric Kidson of Lindsey Wilson (NAIA) who will both be joining the prestigious organization of the Dutch Lions in Chicago. And last but certainly not least, we have a reunion of Rex Pearce and Tyler Zimbounellis. One of Harford (NJCAA DI) and Adams State (DII) respectively, these boys both played their last season in Australia together at Canterbury Bankstown Berries and will now be suiting up together for Springfield Demize in the NPSL.

 

Everyone here at SCA is extremely proud of their achievements to date, and we can’t wait to tune in and watch some action-packed games throughout the US summer.

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