Photo by Howard C. Smith/ISIphotos.com
By FRANCO PANIZO
The 2012 season will be NASL Commissioner David Downs' last.
Downs is set to leave his post with NASL at the end of the current campaign, the league announced Thursday. Downs has served as the league's commissioner for its first two seasons, but he intends to retire and move from Miami back to the New York area once the NASL Championship Series concludes. Downs will reportedly assist the league in its transition to a new commissioner.
During his two years in charge, Downs has helped the league grow after trying times threatened to shut it down. As Downs told SBI earlier this year, attendance has gone up, even if only slightly, and the addition of the San Antonio Scorpions has been great in terms of filling the void left behind by the Montreal Impact.
Here are more notes from NASL:
MINNESOTA STARS' PLACE IN JEOPARDY
The Minnesota Stars FC are still in the hunt to repeat as NASL champions, but even that will not guarantee them a spot in the league next year.
The Stars still are without an owner and the introduction of the New York Cosmos for the 2013 season is putting Minnesota's place in NASL in jeopardy. The league operated the Stars this season and last, but new ownership needs to be found by Oct. 27 in order for Minnesota to assure itself of a place in NASL in 2013. NASL Commissioner David Downs recently cited the lack of ownership, financial restrictions and poor attendance as the team's issues right now.
ROWDIES' HILL NAMED COACH OF THE YEAR
The Tampa Bay Rowdies have enjoyed a successful campaign in 2012 and head coach Ricky Hill has played a big part in making that happen.
Having guided the Rowdies to a second-place finish in the regular season, Hill earned the inaugural NASL Coach of the Year award as voted by media across the nation. The Rowdies ended up just two points shy of first place in the standings and lost just twice in their final 17 matches.
Hill edged out regular season champion San Antonio Scorpions head coach Tim Hankinson for the honors.
What do you make of Downs' departure? Worried about the Stars' future? Think Hill was the right choice for Coach of the Year?
Share your thoughts below.