“Building momentum off our U.S. Soccer Division II designation last week, USL aims to become one of the most globally recognized second division professional soccer leagues in the world and our expansive national footprint for this season will showcase teams in 21 of the top 50 U.S. media markets,” said USL President Jake Edwards via press release. “The 2017 USL season will feature a total of 495 games in 19 states with a focus on enhanced competition, and strong regional rivalries in both Eastern and Western Conferences.”
League newcomers the Tampa Bay Rowdies and Ottawa Fury FC will play in the USL’s Eastern Conference while expansion Reno 1868 FC will play in the Western Conference. Saint Louis FC will rejoin the Eastern Conference, and both the Eastern and Western Conferences will each have 15 teams. Here’s the breakdown:
Bethlehem Steel FC, Charleston Battery, Charlotte Independence, FC Cincinnati, Harrisburg City Islanders, Louisville City FC, New York Red Bulls II, Orlando City B, Ottawa Fury FC, Pittsburgh Riverhounds, Richmond Kickers, Rochester Rhinos, Saint Louis FC, Tampa Bay Rowdies, Toronto FC II
Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC, LA Galaxy II, OKC Energy FC, Orange County Blues FC, Phoenix Rising FC, Portland Timbers 2, Real Monarchs SLC, Reno 1868 FC, Rio Grande Valley FC, Sacramento Republic FC, San Antonio FC, Seattle Sounders FC 2, Swope Park Rangers, Tulsa Roughnecks FC, Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2
The USL enters the 2017 season with three new teams and has announced Nashville SC as joining the league in 2018.