Despite USA Ultimate’s big announcement about the Triple Crown Tour, which included what appeared to be concessions to the 18 elite men’s teams who have signed letters of interest with the NexGen League, Kevin Minderhout is still working to put together functional plans for the 2013 season.
In a letter sent out to teams last night, Minderhout described more of the logistical details of his proposed league.
“One of the critiques leveled at my proposal has been that I do not possess the historical stability of USAU – a valid criticism given my initial proposal included little information regarding event logistics beyond a couple paragraphs on hiring two additional staff members,” he wrote. “The major reason for USAU’s stability over the past several decades is attributable to the inherently low risk of a participant funded model. USAU has increased its cash reserves by almost three-fold and by more than a million dollars from 2009 to 2011 by the simple course of raising membership dues.
“The League removes this low risk funding mechanism as we aim to add more services while simultaneously reducing the costs of participation. This does not, however, require that we be unstable or operationally dependent on a single individual.”
Financial — and therefore league — stability has been rumored to be one of the major sticking points for some teams with Minderhout’s proposal. No team has spoken publicly about their plans for the upcoming season.
The letter goes on to to outline the plans for hiring six summer staff members, equipment transportation and travel policies, weather policy, video archiving plans, and field access policy.
Minderhout says there is now a February 11th hard deadline for a new signed letter of intent “that if signed will bring all parties together for exclusive negotiations and a good faith effort to create the League.” If the letter isn’t signed by that date, discussions will cease about the 2013 season.
More pressing, perhaps, is the teams’ decision about whether or not to play in the Triple Crown Tour. Teams have been given a deadline by USA Ultimate’s Will Deaver, although the date is not known. The original deadline was January 31st, but it may have changed in subsequent discussions.
If teams choose to duck out on USA Ultimate, they are effectively committing themselves to playing in the NexGen league, given the stricter new rules about Pro and Elite Flight teams playing in the regular season.
Below is the full text of Minderhout’s letter to teams: