GREEN COUNTRY SOCCER ASSOCIATION HISTORY
Taken from the 4th Annual Green Country Championship Program, May 20, 1978
Soccer - the number one game in the world - is beginning to make itself established as one of the leading sports in the United States. And, nowhere has the sport of Soccer become more popular in as short a period of time as in Northeastern Oklahoma.
Green Country Soccer Association was formed in the fall of 1975 with about 1,000 boys and girls. Now there are over 11,000 participants playing in about 718 teams playing in a fall and spring schedule.
The founders of GCSA selected the "best" rules and by-laws of various successfully operated youth soccer associations throughout the country.
One of the most important rules states that everybody plays. That is, every player who displays an interest and desire to participate, and who takes part in team practices shall play at least one-half of each game.
A second important rule limits the number of practice sessions a team shall have during a week. This allows each child enough free time to do what he or she wants to do, other than playing Soccer.
Another factor in the rapid growth of soccer is the low cost of participation. The playing fee, per player, is $7.00 per season. Teams are not allowed to be sponsored by business forms or organizations. GCSA prefers the game to be "fun" rather than a "job".
Player enjoyment can be counted as another vital game growth factor. There is lots of non-stop action with every player becoming involved in the game, regardless of the position played. Size of the player makes little difference. What is important is agility, speed, endurance and hustle!
Players are divided according to age and to decisions - Under 8, Under 10, Under 12, Under 14, Under 16 and Under 19. Boys and girls play on separate teams in GCSA, which is the only youth soccer organization in Northeast Oklahoma. The Association is divided into 20 Clubs . . . South Tulsa, Central, East Tulsa, Northeast Tulsa, Jenks, Shadow Mountain, Bixby, Claremore, Broken Arrow, Owasso, Bristow, Sand Springs, Skaitook, Union, Wagoner, Coweta, Drumright, West Tulsa, Bartlesville, and Sapulpa. Plans are underway for formation of clubs and spurring interest in Tulsa's north section. There is even soccer for parents. . . or interested adults in Northeast Oklahoma Adult Soccer Association.
Enhancing the game of Soccer has been the publicity surrounding the legendary Pele (the Brazilian regarded as the world's greatest Soccer player). Clinics conducted by people such as Pele and our own Tulsa Roughnecks are planting the seeds of Soccer in the fertile minds of our youth.
Founders of GCSA were Don Jones, Don Weinert, Robert Beckers, Jilees Pennick, Tom Iadevaia, John Heard and Walter Schnoor. Don Jones and Don Weinert have also served as past presidents of GCSA with Tom Seymour currently holding the position.
There is general agreement that Northeast Oklahoma's Soccer future is a promising and bright one with Green Country Soccer Association providing a firm foundation. In the not too distant years, perhaps one of the GCSA players will be one of America's outstanding Soccer Stars!
On Tuesday, May 25, 1976 Pele presented a Soccer Clinic in the Tulsa Downtown Assembly Center for the youth of the Green Country Soccer Association.