The North American Soccer League, the home of the Minnesota Stars, has announced that the league will play a split schedule in 2013. The league will crown a first-half champion based on a late March-to-July 4 season, then reset and play an August-to-October second half, with the winners of each half meeting to determine the league champion.
"The new format takes into consideration a variety of factors including fan and player comfort in our many warm-weather cities," said NASL commissioner David Downs, which I'm sure is exciting news for the fans and players in traditional warm-weather locales like Edmonton and Minnesota.
The Stars have not played an outdoor home game before April 30 since the formation of the NASL in 2011. One assumes that Minnesota would have to begin the year with a six- or seven-game road trip to make this schedule work.