NPSL Soccer With Temecula FC Owner Brandon Jantz
The growth of the NPSL is remarkable — as players across the country benefit from its pathway to continue their playing career beyond the college level and gain valuable exposure. The NPSL is currently in over 80 markets with further expansion in sight for the future.
GoalNation spoke with Temecula FC owner Brandon Jantz on the growth of the NPSL and his background in the game.
Related Article: Temecula FC’s Willie Donachie On Soccer
NPSL Soccer News: The 2017 National Premier Soccer League (NPSL) is underway as another year of semi-professional soccer takes the fields across the United States.
Temecula FC of the Southwest Conference has developed a club that includes top-to-bottom development with a youth program also serving the community.
GoalNation spoke with Temecula FC Owner Brandon Jantz on his motivation for growing the game and his experience in the NPSL.
Diane Scavuzzo: When did you become involved with the NPSL?
Brandon Jantz: In 2013, Temecula FC was accepted into the NPSL. 2014 was our first season.
Diane Scavuzzo: What is your position?
Brandon Jantz: Owner.
Diane Scavuzzo: What did you do before?
Brandon Jantz: Coach youth soccer and worked at Abbott Vascular.
Diane Scavuzzo: Why did you originally join the NPSL?
Brandon Jantz: I joined the NPSL to give the top players in Temecula a real club to play for. I had bounced around coaching at all the local youth clubs looking for greener grass and a club that wants to really help the youth players.
After being fed up with the lack of options and the high costs for all the players at these local clubs and no one wanting to do anything about it, I put my money where my mouth was and invested in the NPSL team.
Diane Scavuzzo: Do you believe the NPSL is a pipeline to the pros?
Brandon Jantz: It is already for sure. We’ve had three players already pass from Temecula FC into professional soccer in the United States.
Diane Scavuzzo: Who do you believe is your team’s biggest rival in the NPSL?
Brandon Jantz: Riverside Coras is our derby match.
Diane Scavuzzo: What is the greatest challenge for every NPSL team?
Brandon Jantz: I think the largest challenge is getting local support.
Soccer is growing in this country, but we are still very far behind most other countries when it comes to attendance at the lower leagues outside the MLS.
We have a local population of 500,000 within a 30 minutes drive and only get anywhere from 150-500 supporters in the seats. Any city that size anywhere else in the world would get 15,000-45,000 in the seats. We have a long way to go but we are working on it every day.
Diane Scavuzzo: What are your goals?
Brandon Jantz: The main goal is to make sure Temecula FC stays in the NPSL for many years to come. We are putting a plan into place to change our ownership structure to allow for 1000’s of local ownership options, which will help the community feel part of the club and what we are trying to achieve.
The main goal is the community getting involved and being a part of the club.
Brandon Jantz: Obviously there is a little drop in standard from the MLS but not so much from NASL and USL.
Many NPSL teams, ours included, have former MLS, NASL and USL players.
I feel the matches are more exciting due to the fact the play is much more open and free flowing.
Diane Scavuzzo: NPSL has nearly 100 teams in over 80+ markets across the country – is your area in need of more competition or are you concerned about future expansion?
Brandon Jantz: I think we could have up to as many as 20-30 clubs in the California/Arizona/Nevada area in the future and would hope to see that soon. It’s about good ownership groups that have a good supporters base.
Diane Scavuzzo: Do you feel that the NPSL is doing a good job with the challenges of amateur/pro men’s soccer?
Brandon Jantz: I feel the NPSL is doing a wonderful job.
I’ve played or been involved in all levels of U.S. professional soccer and feel the NPSL is the best option for any potential team/ownership group.
You can register as pro or amateur and have the freedom to build your club the way you would like with very little overhead in comparison to other leagues which helps insure a sustainable business.
Diane Scavuzzo: How important is it for the NPSL to work with youth soccer clubs?
Brandon Jantz: I think is one of the most important parts to be honest! Young players need to watch live soccer at the highest level possible and the NPSL provides that in over 80 communities nationwide at a very low price. Not all communities have a MLS team within a few minutes drive, so the NPSL helps provide great local soccer.
Diane Scavuzzo: Have you played pro?
Brandon Jantz: Yes, I played for the Orange County Zodiac, Boston Bulldogs and Cape Cod Crusaders from 1997-2002.
Diane Scavuzzo: Did you play youth?
Brandon Jantz: I played for Temecula Alliance and San Diego Surf.
Diane Scavuzzo: Who was your mentor?
Brandon Jantz: Willie Donachie. He is a Scottish former professional footballer who won 35 full caps for Scotland and played in the 1978 FIFA World Cup.
Diane Scavuzzo: Would you like to see European style promotion and relegation exist in the USA?
Brandon Jantz: Yes, when the time is right but that could be 50-60 years away.
Once lower league clubs are getting 15,000-20,000 supporters per match you can look into Pro/Rel options.
Right now lower league teams could not afford being promoted and don’t have the facilities/stadiums to support it.
Diane Scavuzzo: What inspires you?
Brandon Jantz: My family.
Diane Scavuzzo: What surprises people about you the most?
Brandon Jantz: I think the fact that I have four kids! I guess people are having smaller families nowadays.
Diane Scavuzzo: What is the one moment/experience/decision you would like to turn back the clock and change?
Brandon Jantz: None. Every decision I have made has led me to where I am now.
I would not change a thing.
Diane Scavuzzo: If you could pick any super power, what would it be and why?
Brandon Jantz: The ability to bring people back to life. I’ve seen what losing a child can do to a family and I wish I could fix it.