Any questions regarding this situation should be directed to the North Dakota State Soccer Association or Fargo Soccer Club.
In his statement, Mr. Lucas infers that the Fargo Soccer Club was not invited to play in the Kohl’s Cup. This is not true. As early as December 20, 2012, the Kohl’s Cup Tournament Director and TC Storm Board Member Jeff Olson sent an email invitation to Fargo Soccer Club President. That email is shown below:
Tricity would like to inform Fargo Soccer Club recreational teams that we will be hosting a Kohl's American Cup tournament on May 18-19 2013. The entry fee for this tournament will be 75$ per team and we will provide 3 games. Divisions will be boys and girls grades 2-8. We anticipate all of our rec teams participating.
Please consider making this tournament part of your spring recreational program.
As you likely know, this is a recreational tournament only. We look forward to scheduling some competitive matches throughout the summer where they fit.
More information to come early 2013.
TC Storm Kohl's American Cup Director
The rest of the email from Mike Lucas has nothing to do with the Kohl’s Cup tournament but is another inference, this time as to the ostensible reason why the Fargo Soccer Club did not participate in the Kohl’s Cup.
Over the course of the winter, Jeff Olson (TC Storm) and Matt Noah (Fargo Soccer Club) discussed the sanctioning of the Kohl’s Cup tournament. Jeff had researched the subject and found that the Kohl’s Cup is not restrictable if the host organization requests it to be unrestricted. As an example, he stated that he found that the Kohl’s Cup in New Mexico was sanctioned as an unrestricted tournament (sanctioning document attached). As an unrestricted tournament, the Fargo Soccer Club would be eligible to enter teams and participate. As a restricted tournament, only members of the NDSA (North Dakota Soccer Association) would be allowed to participate. The Fargo Soccer Club is not a member of NDSA because it chose not to renew membership after the 2012 season; not because of any action by the NDSA.
On February 15, 2013, Matt Noah sent the following email to Jeff Olson, along with the New Mexico Kohl’s Cup Agreement.
I did research the New Mexico Kohl’s Cup tournament and your claim that it is unrestricted. You are 100% correct. You should use that as you seek sanctioning in North Dakota. I believe you can also use the fact that USSF bylaws and rules clearly state that a tournament cannot be denied sanctioning because it is unrestricted. In other words, if you make your application for sanctioning as unrestricted and they (NDSA) denies your application then you can try to apply as restricted. If they approve the identical tournament as restricted but earlier denied it as unrestricted, you have a valid grievance. In other words, I think you are on solid ground by applying for an unrestricted Kohl’s Cup tournament.
The other bit of good news is that www.thetournamentcenter.com shows the Minnesota Kohl’s Cup as unrestricted although there is official USSF or USYS sanctioning documentation available for review.
In subsequent phone conversations, Jeff Olson stated the NDSA Execute Director Terry Schneweiss indicated that he would not allow the Kohl’s Cup to be an unrestricted tournament. The governing body for soccer in the USA, the United States Soccer Federation (USSF or Federation) has bylaws and policies governing tournament sanctioning. USSF Policy 601-7, Section 2 is the governing authority in this matter. Subsection (B) of the policy clearly states, “Organization Members may not deny approval to host a tournament on the basis that the tournament is Unrestricted.” NDSA is the Organization Member of the USSF. They cannot deny approval to host a tournament by TC Storm if TC Storm wants it to be Unrestricted.
Therefore, either NDSA broke this Federation policy by not approving the tournament as Unrestricted or TC Storm willfully only applied for a Restricted tournament. In the latter case, TC Storm shut out the Fargo Soccer Club from participation. In the former case, NDSA not only violated a USSF policy but also shut out the Fargo Soccer Club from participation.
Either way, the ostensible reason given by Mike Lucas is a false excuse for the reason the Fargo Soccer Club did not participate in the 2013 Kohl’s Cup hosted by the TC Storm.
Clearly, the TC Storm invited us to play and then never bothered to sanction the tournament so that we could attend. Mike Lucas' email seems to be an attempt to discredit the Fargo Soccer Club. Clearly, TC Storm membership wanted us to play but TC Storm management did not.
And either way, the TC Storm did not represent the situation truthfully and fully to its members.