Pete Caringi's decision to resign last week as coach of the Maryland Bays is a major setback for the Bays and for the struggling American Professional Soccer League.
It also takes one of the most innovative offensive soccer minds ithe country away from the outdoor pro game just when it is needed most.
The U.S. Soccer Federation is in the process of forming a majoprofessional outdoor pro league for the 1992 season, and Caringi could only help that league, whose survival is a must in the buildup for the 1994 World Cup.
In one season, Caringi turned around the Bays and led them tthe APSL championship. They even came close to upsetting the Canadian Soccer League champion Vancouver 86ers in a battle for the North American Soccer League title.
But Caringi, 35, said he had to think of financial security for hifamily when he was offered the soccer head coaching job at the University of Maryland Baltimore County last week.
"Words can't describe how much I'll miss the Bays," he said. "love the Bays and I'll always be a Bays fan, but I'm doing what's best for myself and my family. I'm looking forward to another step in my life."
Caringi hinted that his salary at UMBC will match the total hreceived for coaching the soccer team at Essex Community College and the Bays.
There were times during the APSL playoffs last season thaCaringi would get off the airplane from a Bays game and drive straight to an Essex game.
Caringi said it would be impossible to coach both UMBC and thBays.
"I'm going there to build a program, and I couldn't run off to ForLauderdale [Fla.] for a Bays playoff game when the UMBC season is starting," he said. "It's a full-time position and a secure job."
Bays owner John Liparini said he had been negotiating a necontract with Caringi when the UMBC offer came up.
"In reality, the dollars might have been the same for Pete,Liparini said, "but I couldn't offer him the security he has at UMBC. He has a three-year contract, and in the pro game, it's a year-to-year deal. Pete's going to win at the Division I level and UMBC is going to replace Loyola College and the University of Maryland as the soccer powers in the state."
When Caringi, who coached the Bays on a handshake last yearwas asked what would have happened if he and Liparini had come to terms before the UMBC offer, he said, "I guess I would have been the coach of the Bays."
Trouble continues for the last-place Dallas Sidekicks.
Word comes that Tatu, the MSL's leading scorer, is feuding witveteran defender Doc Lawson.
According to Cooper, the two players have almost come tblows in recent weeks.
Maybe the fact that Tatu had taken 346 shots in the team's firs36 games has something to do with it. Lawson is a distant second on the team with 95 shots.
Loyola College forward Doug Miller was selected by the Kansas City Comets in the first round of the MSL collegiate draft in Kansas City, Mo., Feb. 13.
The Comets had the sixth pick in the four-round draft and chosMiller after he scored what proved to be the winning goal in the College Indoor Soccer Showcase Feb. 12 at Kemper Arena.