The WPS saga is starting to creep out beyond the women’s soccer media into some other outlets:
- The Soccer America headline ”History isn’t on WPS’s side” doesn’t quite tell you what’s in Paul Kennedy’s analysis. History isn’t on WPS’s side in the sense that World Cup booms typically don’t last. (Not mentioned here: That’s also true in men’s soccer. Or any Olympic sport, frankly.) Kennedy states two points well worth remembering. First, WPS doesn’t have its Anschutz or its Hunt, someone with extraordinarily deep pockets who has demonstrated that he’ll stick it out no matter what. (Little wonder the Twittersphere reaches out to Ellen DeGeneres, Oprah Winfrey or, more curiously, Rachel Maddow. Being on TV doesn’t make you a megamillionaire, folks.) Second, if WPS fails, it’s likely to be a long time before we see another Division I league. We’ll get back to this point.
- The head of women’s soccer for FIFA, Tatjana Haenni, hopes WPS survives. That’s not the most interesting part of this AP story. Check out Eniola Aluko, saying she was fortunate to play for a big salary in the league’s first year and that it should’ve been more conservative from the get-go.
- Venerable soccer writer Frank Dell’Apa summarizes the story for Boston.com. The suggestion that WPS terminated magicJack “mistakenly having been assured a replacement had been lined up in Connecticut” is interesting. I’d like to find out more about that. Surely the league would deny it, and in any case, they seem to have reached their breaking point with Dan Borislow no matter how many teams they had.
- Player signings! Anita Asante and Carolyn Blank will stick with Sky Blue.
- Fox Sports Southwest pounces on Megan Rapinoe’s Tweet to Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, imploring him to buy a team. Cuban’s HDNet once broadcast MLS. But the reality check here is that it would be awfully difficult to start from scratch and start a team.
Back in our cozy women’s soccer world, Lauren Barker adds some levity (and insight) in a post at All White Kit.
The big argument for WPS overnight: Anthony DiCicco (not the former WUSA commissioner or Breakers coach) offers a long, eloquent open letter offering unsolicited advice for everyone involved — the league, U.S. Soccer and fans.
- To the fans: Twitter isn’t going to help. (This is where I disagree — Twitter is a useful rallying point. If it’s the end result, maybe that’s a bad thing. But it’s a convenient place to start.)
- To the league: Put forth a compelling, sustainable vision.
- To U.S. Soccer: Yeah, we know the league is flawed, but come on! Do you really expect to have a competitive national team without a top-level league?
He actually sounds a lot like Kate Markgraf, though Markgraf might be more of a Twitter fan than he is. (And again, apologies — Markgraf certainly wasn’t “ranting” in any pejorative sense. She made a good strong case, particularly given the limitations of Twitter.)
Back to the other front of WPS’s current battles — I asked Dan Borislow if he had a court date for his lawsuit yet, and his response was, “Wed for venue.” WPS has argued that Florida lacks jurisdiction over this suit, and that Borislow should’ve filed in Delaware’s Court of Chancery. Borislow has said he’ll pursue justice wherever he needs to go — I was joking when I said “Mars,” but I take him to be quite serious. I’m not sure moving the case helps either party. A delay would surely irritate Borislow. And it might leave the league in limbo a little bit longer while it tries to line up sponsors and perhaps another team, all while the clock is ticking.