LANSING, Mich. – USL League One welcomed Lansing Ignite FC on Thursday as a founding member of the new professional league, which will kick off play in 2019. Tampa, FL – Lansing Ignite FC announced today that it has ceased operations, effective immediately, and will not continue beyond the 2019 season. Led by Majority Owner Tom Dickson, President Nick Grueser and Vice President and General Manager Jeremy Sampson, the club becomes the only professional outdoor soccer team in Michigan. The formation of USL League One (originally announced as USL Division III) was first announced in April 2017, and league officials began touring the country looking for candidate cities for new soccer clubs. "We didn't have the resources to lose that much money for that long. The new club team, one of and a founding member of the upcoming USL League One, is now days away from taking the field. A new era in sports for Michigan’s Capital region was announced yesterday on the field of Cooley Law School Stadium in downtown Lansing. [7] Lansing finished their first season with a 12–6–10 record, good for second place in USL League One. EAST LANSING, Mich. – Goodbye Lansing United. All rights reserved. We really thought it would do better. The league and the team also suspended Lopez-Espin for four games. In their lone season, the Ignite finished in second place in USL League One with 46 points, qualifying for the playoffs. ... owner of Lansing Ignite. But information about the event — billed to be the “biggest sports announcement in Lansing in 23 years” — is largely unavailable to the public. The Ignite’s owner is Tom Dickson, who also owns the Lansing Lugnuts. Attendance started a little slow and it didn’t get better," Dickson said. People are going to come to what they want to come to. I am immensely proud of what we built, and immeasurably grateful to all who have supported this dream along the way. The team folded after the season ended. Ignite owner Tom Dickson decided to pull the plug after falling well short of attendance goals — needing 4,000 per game over time to be solvent … Lansing Community College. Both the player and team owner Tom Dickson have apologized for what he said. This season was the first ever for Lansing Ignite FC. For Lansing's home opener against the Richmond Kickers on April 13, Dickson said the expectation was somewhere between 7,000 and 8,000 fans. ... Maybe that was unrealistic. In 2019, League One teams such as Lansing Ignite paid a $500,000 expansion fee while Championship teams paid $7 million, according to a Dallas News article from November 2018. It was clearly wrong. Top Scorer includes statistics from league matches only. We need another go at it. [5] On March 19, 2019, Lansing Ignite FC announced an affiliation agreement with Chicago Fire of Major League Soccer. They lost in the semifinals, 1-0, to Greenville. This decision to cease operations was made by (Lansing Ignite owner) Tom Dickson. For Lansing Common FC, the new league is a crescendo of a movement gaining momentum since the abrupt shutdown of the third division United Soccer League 1 Lansing Ignite … The Popular Amateur Lansing United Club is Turning into Lansing Ignite FC, Thanks to a New League and New Team Ownership. "For Lansing Ignite, that responsibility rests with Tom Dickson, and I … "We can flip that field 100 times for the cost of what we incurred here this year," Dickson said. 1 weather alerts 1 closings/delays. After approaching Michigan Creative Owner and CEO, Brian Town, with a business proposition, Kirk and Town worked together … View profile View profile badges Get a job like Lansing’s. USL senior vice president Steven Short said in a press release that the league was "disappointed" that Lansing would not return in 2020. Welcome! Let's not let them quit on the team! Lansing Ignite team owners told players last week in a meeting that they would stop operations this year. your password Sampson, who was the owner of Lansing United, said Lansing Ignite will elevate what Lansing United did for Lansing the last five years. Seeing how Lansing United folded after five seasons to create room for Ignite, and then only to have Ignite owner Tom Dickson pull the plug on … Kirk is also a former professional soccer player, who most recently played for Lansing Ignite during their inaugural season. "I … The owner is the ultimate decision maker. The team was a joint effort with the city of Lansing to revitalize the downtown area. Hello Lansing Ignite. View profile View profile badges Get a job like Lansing’s. “We were concerned at different points in the season as the season continued. Team President Nick Grueser said that the team would not give an update on the team's future until after the conclusion of the League One final. "The owner of the organization is the ultimate decision-maker," Sampson told the State Journal. Follow him on Twitter @Phil_Friend. Overall this season, their defence has kept a clean sheet on 3 occasions. Seven representatives from numerous partnering entities took turns addressing the crowd and media members to announce the only professional soccer team for the state of Michigan, Lansing Ignite. Dickson said that he had been in contact with the city throughout the summer to let it know the club was struggling. The club officially announced Monday it would cease operations after one year of existence, a week after word leaked out from player Marshall Hollingsworth that the players and the team's supporters' group, the Assembly Line, had been told the team would fold. Excludes friendlies. "Most of us thought, opening night, the place was going to be sold out. In a press release, Mayor Andy Schor said he was disappointed in learning that the Ignite had ceased operations. ", GRAHAM COUCH:Why Lansing Ignite went belly-up – a look at what killed our pro soccer club. LANSING, Mich. – USL League One welcomed Lansing Ignite FC on Thursday as a founding member of the new professional league, which will kick off play in 2019. Cooley Law School Stadium, which is where the team played downtown, is owned by the City of Lansing. players and the team's supporters' group, the Assembly Line, had been told the team would fold, Why Lansing Ignite went belly-up – a look at what killed our pro soccer club, club would need an average home attendance of 4,000, lost in the semifinals, 1-0, to Greenville, Your California Privacy Rights / Privacy Policy. The club began play in the newly-formed USL League One in 2019 and ceased operations following their inaugural season. ", LIFC coach Nate Miller declined to comment to the State Journal, but he tweeted this afternoon, "I am really proud of our phenomenal young players who represented this city so well. Lansing Ignite will be looking to keep up the momentum today against North Texas, having lost just 1 game from the last 5. "Everyone I've spoken with has said, who would've expected a good financial outcome after year one? "I think the only way you could probably try something like this is to be prepared to lose a lot of money for a while," he said. "We were the ones grinding out the hours, putting our bodies on the line to build something for the city and we really thought we had a good product. Sampson shut down United's men's team to take the Ignite job. While this effort was unsuccessful, my administration is continuously working to bring even more vibrancy, excitement and amenities to Lansing.". "Moneyball Sportswear" Making A Dent In Athletic Apparel Market. Co-Owner at IGNITE BASEBALL ACADEMY. The Michigan-based side had an excellent season, finishing second in the 10-team league. The announced attendance was 3,369. Going into this season, Dickson and the organization anticipated that there could be financial losses, but the Ignite ultimately encountered more challenges than expected and fell short of its goal of drawing 4,000 fans per game. The formation of USL League One (originally announced as USL Division III) was first announced in April 2017, and league officials began touring the country looking for candidate cities for new soccer clubs. The licensing agreement between the club and the city to play in the stadium is a five-year deal . The owner of the Lansing Ignite soccer team confirms one of his players is suspended for making an anti-gay remark on Twitter. "For this to be a financial decision, there's either some miscommunication or disregard for the facts regarding the finances," Fricke said. Jeremy Sampson, the team's vice president and general manager, said the decision was Dickson's alone. The club was backed by owner Tom Dickson, who also owns Cooley Law School Stadium’s Minor League Baseball tenant, the Lansing Lugnuts (Low A; Midwest League). The potential prize winner(s) may be required to provide confirmation that he or she is the owner … The Lansing Ignite, a minor league soccer team, ceased operations this week after falling short of targeted 4,000 attendance benchmarks in its only season. "I've been around the game enough to know that clubs in lower divisions aren't money generators and that's why it almost doesn't quite make sense.". The move was seen as a step towards establishing a professional team, as the PDL is managed by United Soccer Leagues, the same organization that manages League One as well as the second-tier United Soccer League. "We worked hard for many months alongside the team, the stadium and other stakeholders to build Michigan's first professional soccer team. Seven representatives from numerous partnering entities took turns addressing the crowd and media members to announce the only professional soccer team for the state of Michigan, Lansing Ignite. This also signaled the end of the Lansing United men's team, as United owner Jeremy Sampson became the new club's general manager; however, Lansing United Women would continue to operate as planned. For Lansing Ignite, that responsibility rests with Tom Dickson, and I am devastated at the outcome. [6], Lansing played their first USL League One match on 30 March 2019, beating Richmond Kickers 3–2 at City Stadium, Richmond. Lansing Ignite FC was a professional soccer team based in Lansing, Michigan, United States. The Lansing Ignite Football Club is no more. While Lansing fell short of that attendance goal, the Ignite had the third-highest attendance in the league at 2,788 per match. "The owner of the organization is the ultimate decision-maker. Contact digital sports reporter Phil Friend at 517-377-1220 or pfriend@lsj.com. Lansing Ignite forward Ricky Lopez-Espin was banned and fined for, what is being reported as, anti-gay comments said to fans during a game on Saturday night. Dickson said he reached out to multiple parties in an attempt to sell the team, but there were no takers. The city of Lansing was already home to Lansing United, an amateur soccer team in the National Premier Soccer League. We put in a lot of work and effort to build this thing up," Fricke said. The Lansing Ignite Football Club is no more. "With the Lansing Ignite Football Club, the City of Lansing's second professional franchise, we're putting the Capital City on the map in the national sports landscape," said Ignite Owner Dickson. This page was last edited on 18 January 2021, at 21:34. "This team has captured the hearts of so many people throughout Lansing. I feel badly for the people who came and loved it. Lansing Ignite; 2019 season; Owner: Tom Dickson: Head coach: Nate Miller: Stadium: Cooley Law School Stadium: USL League One: 2nd: USL1 Playoffs: Semifinals: U.S. Open Cup: 2nd Round: Top goalscorer: Tumi Moshobane (10) Highest home attendance: League/All: 4,818 (June 22 vs. Orlando City B) Lowest home attendance: League: 1,725 (May 11 vs. Greenville Triumph) All: 100 “We are extremely disappointed to make this announcement, and we know our fans will be disappointed too,” said Tom Dickson, owner of Lansing Ignite. At first, we weren’t concerned, but we knew we needed to make some changes to try to attract more people. In the buildup to Lansing's inaugural season, team president Nick Grueser said the club would need an average home attendance of 4,000 for it to be financially stable. Cooley Law School Stadium, which is where the team plays downtown, is owned by the City of Lansing. Not only for soccer, but for any business, that's lofty expectations. Saint Joseph's University. The owner is the ultimate decision maker. "If anything, it got worse. I’m devastated at the outcome as this team was something I spent six years building. [4] On November 14, 2018, Lansing Ignite FC announced Nate Miller as the inaugural head coach. Saint Joseph's University. When City Council signed off on the deal to bring the Ignite to Lansing last fall, it was understood that the city would incur more than $1 million in potential costs over five years, including a maximum of 15 changeovers per year with the Cooley field, going from baseball to soccer and back, costing $12,000 to $15,000 each time. Co-Owner at IGNITE BASEBALL ACADEMY. © 2021 www.lansingstatejournal.com. [8] They fell in the playoff semifinal to Greenville Triumph SC, 1–0. The Ignite declined to confirm LAHR’s assertions, which were made in a letter LAHR released to City Pulse. The professional soccer club had played one season at Cooley Law School Stadium in downtown Lansing. I spent six years building this organization and now it's gone. The city of Lansing was already home to Lansing United, an amateur soccer team in the National Premier Soccer League. "Lansing United's move to PDL comes with new rivalries, USL dreams", "Lansing Ignite USL pro soccer team likely to begin in downtown Lansing", "Lansing Ignite, new USL soccer club, gets go-ahead to play downtown", "Lansing Ignite FC Unveiled as USL League One Founding Member", "Lansing Ignite Soccer's First Coach, Nate Miller, Ready to Bring Championships to the City", "Lansing Ignite forms alliance with Chicago Fire, will host MLS team at Cooley Stadium", "Lansing Ignite wins inaugural match, 3–2, over Richmond Kickers in USL League One", "Lansing Ignite falls to Greenville Triumph, 1–0, in USL League One semifinals", "Lansing Ignite president: 'No further updates' about club's future until next week", "LAFCU Named Official Kit Sponsor of Lansing Ignite", "LIFC to Host Livonia City FC in Final 2019 Exhibition Match", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Lansing_Ignite_FC&oldid=1001245817, Association football clubs established in 2018, Association football clubs disestablished in 2019, Football team templates which use American parameter, Short description is different from Wikidata, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. Mayor Andy Schor and Tom Dickson, the owner of the Lansing Lugnuts and the recently formed Lansing Ignite soccer team, will orchestrate the big reveal with “drinks and prizes” at 4 p.m. "We brought the team to … [10], On October 21, 2019, it was officially announced by USL League One that, despite a successful first season performance-wise, the Ignite would not be returning for the 2020 season.[11]. Lansing, Michigan’s professional soccer team, Lansing Ignite, announced Monday that the club will not continue after its inaugural 2019 season. Tom Dickson, owner of the Ignite, told The Center Square the shutdown was a “business reality” because attendance only … "We brought the team to Lansing … Federal jobs in Falls Church, VA. 24,943 open jobs. [2] On October 8, the city council unanimously approved the plans, which are expected to cost the city $1 million over the course of a five-year contract. Includes USL Regular Season, USL Playoffs, U.S. Open Cup. 1 weather alerts 1 closings/delays. The Lansing Ignite, a minor league soccer team, ceased operations this week after falling short of targeted 4,000 attendance benchmarks in its only season. "For Lansing Ignite, that responsibility rests with Tom Dickson, and I am devastated at the outcome. "Now we're not going to have a chance to run it back here in Lansing. Lansing Ignite forward, Ricky Lopez-Espin, was banned and fined for, what is being reported as, anti-gay comments said to fans during a game on Saturday night. It was upsetting on that aspect.". Tom Dickson made one thing clear: The decision to fold Lansing Ignite Football Club after one season came down to how much money the team was losing on a month-to-month basis. “We are extremely disappointed to make this announcement, and we know our fans will be disappointed too,” said Tom Dickson, owner of Lansing Ignite. ^ 1. I would rather have tried and failed than to have never tried at all. In 2018, United moved from NPSL to the Premier Development League, another amateur league often considered the fourth tier of American soccer. [1], In September 2018, the Lansing State Journal reported that the owners of the Lansing Lugnuts, a local minor league baseball team, had presented plans to Lansing City Council for a professional soccer team to play at Cooley Law School Stadium, also home to the Lugnuts. "We are very pleased to … Thank you to our passionate supporters who I know this is such a hard time for. It was an honor to work in your city.". Mine included. ... About Owner + Founder of Ember Co. a boutique agency out of Idaho Springs, Colorado helping outdoor, lifestyle and breweries ignite their brands. Only one club in USL League One, Forward Madison, reached that stated benchmark, averaging 4,292 fans per league match. The Ignite played in USL League One, the third division of American soccer. your username. Log into your account. Lansing Ignite has kept 3 clean sheets in the last 5 games, conceding 4 goals during this period. The move was seen as a step towards esta… “We brought the … Before taking a front-office job with the Ignite, Sampson had founded Lansing United, which fielded a men's team from 2014-18. “I would say two months ago we started to face the reality we may not have an option here to keep it going the way it was,” Dickson said. Ignite captain Brandon Fricke believes the goal of an average home attendance of 4,000 was unrealistic. I’m devastated at the outcome as this team was something I spent six years building. None of those power players would have wanted to team to quit on the field. [3], On October 25, 2018, USL League One officially announced Lansing Ignite FC as its ninth founding member team, to begin play in 2019. ... owner of Lansing Ignite. It's possible that we shot too high.". Lansing, Michigan’s professional soccer team, Lansing Ignite, announced Monday that the club will not continue after its inaugural 2019 season. Back in October, the Lansing Ignite FC was unveiled to the masses by an ensemble of familiar faces, including Mayor Andy Schor and Lansing Lugnuts and Ignite FC owner Tom Dickson. Led by Majority Owner Tom Dickson, President Nick Grueser and Vice President and General Manager Jeremy Sampson, the club becomes the only professional outdoor soccer team in Michigan. And now it’s gone. [9] On October 14, 2019, midfielder Marshall Hollingsworth posted on Instagram that the Ignite would be folding and that all players had been released from their contracts. LAHR was critical of the player, but it stopped short of calling for his dismissal. "We are extremely disappointed to make this announcement, and we know our fans will be disappointed too," Ignite owner Tom Dickson said in a statement. "We thought 4,000 should be a laydown," Dickson said. The owners of the Lansing Ignite FC are stopping operations, effective immediately. A new era in sports for Michigan’s Capital region was announced yesterday on the field of Cooley Law School Stadium in downtown Lansing. "The owner of the organization is the ultimate decision-maker," Sampson told the State Journal. Federal jobs in Falls Church, VA. 24,943 open jobs. "We are extremely disappointed to make this announcement, and we know our fans will be disappointed too," Ignite owner Tom Dickson said in a statement. Dickson also owns the city's minor league baseball team, the Lansing Lugnuts. In 2019, League One teams such as Lansing Ignite paid a $500,000 expansion fee while Championship teams paid $7 million, according to a Dallas News article from November 2018. The new soccer team comes after the semi-professional soccer team Lansing United played its last season this past summer. And that just giving up after one season is a weak move. As difficult as it is to watch it come to an end, I am glad that we had the opportunity for a professional season in USL League One, and that we took the risk to create this organization. In 2018, United moved from NPSL to the Premier Development League, another amateur league often considered the fourth tier of American soccer. Lansing also didn’t do too badly at the gate for a new third division club and averaged 2,788 fans in 14 home games. Dickson, the team’s owner, did not go into specific financial details when meeting with the media Monday afternoon, but he said the decision to fold the city’s professional soccer team came a month ago. Only Forward Madison FC and the Kickers drew larger crowds. "I'm not blaming people. Let's show the City of Lansing, Ignite owner Tom Dickson, the USL League One, and area economic powers that we want Ignite to stay. This decision to cease operations was made by (Lansing Ignite owner) Tom Dickson. The 2019 Lansing Ignite FC season was the only season for the club. Dickson did not go into specifics regarding how much money he lost, but he said revenue came at about half of what was expected. LANSING, Mich. — Yes Club Ignite Prize Package Giveaway. "I couldn't get anyone else to step in and say, I want to be a part of this.". Dickson said the cost of the field conversion was not a factor and "relatively insignificant.".

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