MSL abuzz with expansion talk

February 13, 1992|By Sandra McKee | Sandra McKee,Staff Writer

Expansion is the word, and the Major Soccer League is extending feelers in as many directions as it can, in an attempt to grow before the start of next season.

Yesterday, Norm Sonju, chief executive officer of the NBA Dallas Mavericks and chief executive officer of the MSL's Dallas Sidekicks, said he has spearheaded an expansion drive to other NBA owners, who own their own buildings.

Sonju said he thinks at least one new franchise will come out of NBA ownership this season and has hopes for as many as three.

Commissioner Earl Foreman said that, through other efforts, he expects the MSL to expand by two teams next season. He also said expansion into England will be discussed today, when MSL representative Graham Walker makes a presentation.

"My sense of our directors is that they would welcome an English franchise," Foreman said.

Foreman said any prospective owner will have to post a letter of credit by April 15 for the 1992-93 season. He also said the current franchise fee is $250,000.

"I have three teams from the NBA, who are specifically making trips to see me and watch the Sidekicks," Sonju said. "There is no sport more compatible with the NBA than indoor soccer. And if we're going to be associated with soccer, we should be associated with the best -- and that's the MSL."

Sonju said he came to the MSL meetings "because it was important to make a statement to the other owners in this league that we [Sonju and Mavericks/Sidekicks owner Donald Carter] are absolutely, unequivocally committed to the MSL."

He said there are 11 NBA owners who own their own arenas and who are looking for ways to fill dates.

In other expansion efforts, Sonju is catering a dinner in his office later this month for Bob and Mindy Rich, who own the Class AAA Buffalo Bison. The couple, and Seymour H. Knox III, chairman of the NHL Buffalo Sabres, announced officially yesterday they will be the majority owners of a new pro soccer team in Buffalo next season. But whether it will be in the MSL or the National Professional Soccer League is not known.

Jim May, a goalie with the defunct Buffalo Stallions and with the Blast of the MSL, will be the team's vice president and general manager.

College Indoor Soccer Showcase

5)

Site: Baltimore Arena, 5:05 tonight

Outlook: The top 32 collegiate soccer players in the country will be on display. This East vs. West game will feature ten 1991 All-Americans, seven from Division I and three from Division III. Injured Blast M Mike Stankovic will coach the East team.

ROSTERS:

Player, team . . . . . . . . . . . Position

EAST

Joe Layfield, Towson State . . . . Forward

Jason Dieter, UMBC . . . . . . . . Forward

Vito Serafini, Hartford. . . . . . Forward

Domenick Scanni, Dowling . . . . . Forward

Mario Lone, G. Washington. . . . . Forward

Larry Martin, Clarkson . . . . . . Forward

Ed McCue, Towson State . . . . . . Midfield

John Silva, Seton Hall . . . . . . Midfield

Henrique Silva, Salem State. . . . Midfield

Mirsad Huseinovic, Brooklyn. . . . Midfield

Todd Graden, SUNY-Fredonia . . . . Midfield

Neil Payntor, Old Dominion . . . . Defense

Richie Williams, Virginia. . . . . Defense

Tom Donohue, Loyola. . . . . . . . Defense

Vince Jajuga, Connecticut. . . . . Defense

Shaka Hislop, Howard . . . . . . . Goalkeeper

Scott Gregory, Quincy. . . . . . . Goalkeeper

WEST

Andrew Coggins, S. Carolina. . . . Forward

Andy Kessinger, O. Wesleyan. . . . Forward

Troy Bingham, Gannon . . . . . . . Forward

David Weir, Evansville . . . . . . Forward

Graham Merryweather, E'ville . . . Midfield

Gerell Elliott, Fresno State . . . Midfield

Bryan Thompson, SMU. . . . . . . . Midfield

Andrew Zorovich, Furman. . . . . . Midfield

Terry Pryer, UNLV. . . . . . . . . Midfield

Joey Leonetti, Portland. . . . . . Midfield

Steve Kuntz, St. Louis . . . . . . Defense

Craig Conger, Wake Forest. . . . . Defense

Brian Enge, Harvard. . . . . . . . Defense

Chris Hamilton, Akron. . . . . . . Defense

Aidan Heaney, UNC-Char.. . . . . . Goalkeeper

Marcus Roy, N. Illinois. . . . . . Goalkeeper

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