(TAMPA, Fla.) – The United Soccer League (USL) – the largest Division II professional league in the world and longest standing member of the U.S. Soccer Federation – today debuts the USL Television Network, featuring local broadcast agreements in 17 unique markets.
The USL Television Network will reach more than 10 million households, transmitting a more than 300 games during the 2017 USL season. Network affiliates will broadcast regular-season games for local USL teams with Spanish-language broadcasts available, and have the opportunity to receive exclusive content, including select nationally-syndicated games, short-form USL features and weekly programming. The complete list of USL Television Network affiliates can be found at www.uslsoccer.com.
“Our turnkey capabilities with USL Productions are expansive and establishing USL Television Network provides tailored local programming to more than half our markets across the country,” said Tom Veit, USL Executive VP and Chief Revenue Officer. “This is another milestone in USL’s strategy of reaching supporters across multiple platforms including local bilingual broadcast television syndications, national linear broadcast and an expansive digital and social media presence.”
All the games will be produced by USL Productions, the league’s $10 million investment, and managed through the state-of-the-art USL Broadcast Center in association with VISTA Worldlink in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
Additionally, USL Productions introduced its on-air talent for the 2017 season: play-by-play host Michael Watts and reporter Morgan Conklin.
Watts, returning for his second full season as the voice of the USL, has announced for the past two USL Cup Finals. He also covers U.S. Women’s National Team games for ESPN, CONCACAF Champions League and Major League Soccer coverage on the YES Network.
“It’s been an exciting journey to witness USL’s impressive growth first-hand over the past two seasons,” said Watts. “As one of the top second division professional soccer leagues in the world, the 2017 promises to be a further cut above thanks to the integration of USL Productions and its robust infrastructure.”
Conklin joins the USL having worked previously for the SEC Network, ESPN3 and FOX Sports South. A former player at Virginia Tech, Conklin was a regular contributor on SEC and ACC soccer broadcasts last fall leading up to the NCAA College Cup. A native of Midlothian, Va., she played in the Richmond Kickers’ Youth Academy before her college career, providing a unique insight into the USL’s storied history.
“With the excitement of the USL’s most historic season underway, I’m looking forward to joining the broadcast team on ESPN to tell amazing stories about USL teams, players, coaches and fans from across the country,” said Conklin.
More information: www.USLSoccer.com.
About United Soccer LeagueThe USL is the world’s largest Division II professional soccer league, with 30 markets in 20 U.S. states and two Canadian provinces for the 2017 season. In total, the USL reaches a population of 75 million people, fueling the growth of professional soccer across North America.
In 2016, more than $100 million were invested league-wide into stadium infrastructure to create venues that deliver an unforgettable fan and competitor experience. The USL has national media partnerships with ESPN and SiriusXM, and recently invested $10 million to create USL Productions – which includes a state-of-the-art facility that will produce and distribute nearly 500 league matches and more than 1,000 hours of original content to national partners, local affiliates, USL’s Match Center and international markets.
A growing league, the USL has more than doubled in size since 2014, with Ottawa Fury FC, Reno 1868 FC and the Tampa Bay Rowdies scheduled to debut in 2017. Nashville SC is the first club set to join the league for 2018. Beyond league play, the USL regularly features international exhibitions against leading Premier League, Liga MX, and Bundesliga clubs, among others.
Headquartered in Tampa, Fla., the USL provides unparalleled club support with a growing team of 50 professionals across 17 departments, ranging from operations to marketing, communications and sponsorship. Follow the USL at USLSoccer.com, the USL Match Center, and on social media via Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.