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  • Writer's pictureeliteusacademy

What is...'Nationals'?

Every year US College Soccer programs compete with the aim of making it to their National tournament and eventually becoming National Champs, but what is 'Nationals' and how does it work? We give you the full breakdown here.



So, what is 'Nationals'?


Nationals generally stands for the National tournament for a given sport in their Athletic Association. The 3 main associations are the NCAA, NAIA and NJCAA, who each have different divisions within their association which will hold their own respective national tournament, where the best teams of the season compete to be crowned National Champions. For example, in the NCAA for Men's Soccer there is a separate national tournament for teams competing in Division 1, Division 2 & Division 3.


The national tournament for any division or association is the culmination of a season's hard work; each team will have to qualify for the national tournament through either their regular season or Conference tournament results. A team could qualify by winning their Conference regular season for example, which means they finished top of the league in their regional Conference, or by winning their Conference Tournament, a knock out style tournament that follows the regular season.



National tournaments usually follow a knockout style where teams are seeded based on their history of success or seasons results, and are held on one specific site which host's the tournament. As such teams will travel from all over the country for the championships and the area hosting will often be completely taken over by the tournament, with the local community being heavily involved in hosting a quality championships, sort of like the World Cup!


Want to know more about how you can be a Soccer star at Nationals? Click here



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