ADASL. When you see this acronym, what do you think of?
Maybe you think of one of SmallWorld’s recent posts, a feature on the Perrin Cup (ADASL’s knockout cup competition). Maybe you ponder how the ADASL is at the forefront of the Southeast’s soccer scene this winter.
Of course, there’s also the off chance that you think of Adamorobe Sign Language, spoken by 40 people and the subject of the Wikipedia page that emerges when I search “ADASL”.
But I want you to call to memory the rich history this league has to offer, and in this week’s post on the ADASL, I’ve set out to document a bit of that history for all of SmallWorld to see.
This week’s post will provide a bit of background as to what the ADASL is, the history behind it, and why it’s important for the lower-league soccer community. I wanted to get in contact with a smart guy who could explain those very things.
League Administrator Mike Hogan is the smart man in question, and he got me started with some history behind the league.
The ADASL was founded in 1967 with the advent of the original Atlanta Chiefs. Many of the early teams were ethnic in nature. There were Hispanic-, Greek-, Turkish-, German- and British-based teams.Mike Hogan, resident smart guy
So the Chiefs had a significant impact on Atlanta-area soccer outside of their own success. That’s a pretty well-understood fact, but what exactly was the ADASL able to do with that momentum?
High school soccer also took off in the 67-68 season year. As these players graduated, went to college and came home, they eventually moved on to the ADASL spurring a growth in the league in the mid-70s.Mike Hogan
The success of the Atlanta Chiefs in the late-60s drove much of the growth. Several players played during their off-season in the ADASL, and after retirement from the pro game.
That’s a lot of growth. It seems that the ADASL was very wise with incorporating the types of players that would be attracted to the league, and it grew quite nicely as a result.
But the ADASL had to fashion its own identity. Here’s what that identity shaped into:
Early local Atlanta players that continued beyond HS and Youth into college were competitive in nature and as such the ADASL became a truly competitive league. While it was fun, they played for the competition.Mike
That’s a league environment that fosters success because it focuses on what’s important in soccer, the people. It’s no surprise, then, that the ADASL has continued in this vein of social yet competitive play with a lot of quality talent on their member teams.
To sum up, the ADASL took what the Chiefs gave it as far as an opportunity to make soccer popular, catered the league to what the people wanted and needed, and fashioned a league that’s stuck around for over 50 years now.
That, to me, spells out a league worth appreciating and following. It not only helped shape soccer in my local area, but did so in a way that’s set the tone for what grassroots soccer should be about: celebrating diversity and unifying communities.
I hope you enjoyed the history lesson as much as I did, and I certainly hope you’ll continue to follow the ADASL as its league play continues alongside its knockout competition, Perrin Cup.
Support local soccer, unify those around you, and seek out diversity!