2016-17 NorCal NPL Season Preview
NorCal Premier Soccer is very excited to announce Match Day #1 for the 2016 – 2017 National Premier Leagues. Opening day of the NorCal NPL’s 6th Season features nearly 130 matches played across Northern California. This is the day when NorCal NPL teams begin the long march to earn the right to play in the NPL Spring Champions League Division, to earn promotion to the top division of play, or to avoid relegation.
The 2016 – 2017 season promises some interesting twists due to the US Soccer birth year mandates and high school calendar changes. The US Soccer mandate forced many NPL Clubs to make major changes to their team rosters. These roster changes have created super divisions in some age groups, while other ages will see new clubs emerge as powerhouses. The high school soccer season switch for Sacramento Valley and North Bay Soccer Clubs has most of the state now playing winter high school soccer – finally aligning the NorCal NPL calendar.
The year-long season format has been adjusted with all teams playing during the Fall in NPL 1 or NPL 2 divisions. After a winter break, due to high school soccer, teams will return to NPL play in mid-March. The NorCal NPL Champions League, the top spring division, will consist of the top 8 teams in each age group – determined by their Fall Division finish. Champions League teams will compete in March and April with the 2016-17 NorCal NPL Champion being crowned on the final match day at the NorCal NPL Spring Showcase on April 29th – in Davis, CA. The NorCal NPL Champions will represent NorCal Premier Soccer at the 2017 NPL National Finals next July in Indiana.
While the high school calendar changes have not affected the fall division too much, one thing is clear, the upcoming NPL season will be unpredictable as new players are integrated into teams and develop over the course of the next nine months.
US Club Soccer’s National Premier League features over 18 divisions nationally and is the highest level of club soccer offered outside of US Soccer’s Developmental Academy. The NorCal Premier Soccer NPL features year round league play and two Northern California College Showcases hosted by NorCal Premier Soccer.