By Boog Williams
Rowan University has announced a joint venture with MLS to build a soccer stadium at the school to serve as home for a new professional franchise in 2009, Rowan spokesman Joe Cardona said Thursday.
Cardona said the new stadium will be across from the school's new technology center on Route 322 and will be part of a complex that is "unlike anything on the East Coast."
The stadium also will serve as home to Rowan's soccer program and could host high school events as well as youth soccer tournaments, camps and showcases.
"Wow" was the word of the day in the South Jersey scholastic soccer community.
Said Delsea boys' coach Vince Nestore: "It's a great thing for South Jersey soccer, for the young kids to see those guys."
Cardona said the new franchise has not yet been identified or named.
It's not clear if the team would be an expansion franchise or be relocated from another area.
There are 12 teams in MLS, the highest level of professional soccer in the U.S.
New Jersey's last entry in the MLS was the New York/New Jersey Metro Stars, which were sold last week and renamed Red Bull New York.
The Red Bull team will continue to play at Giants Stadium until Red Bull Arena is built at an undisclosed location in New York.