Indy Eleven was launched by Keystone Group CEO Ersal Ozdemir on January 16, 2013 to play in the North American Soccer League, beginning with the 2014 season. Originally born under the Indy Pro Soccer moniker, the club officially adopted its Indy Eleven identity on April 25, 2013 during a ceremony held at the iconic Soldiers and Sailors monument 152 years to the day of the initial enlistment of the 11th Indiana Regiment during the Civil War.
The unique Indy Eleven identity reflects the club’s fans’ desire to have a name tied both to the culture of “the beautiful game” and the State of Indiana, with the name referencing the 11 players giving their all on the field of play in addition to paying homage to the 11th Regiment of Indiana Volunteers, which fought for the Union Army during the Civil War. The inspiration for the name came from Donna Schmink, the Collection Manager at the Indiana War Museum, who, when asked by team officials for ideas on a team name connected to Indiana history, suggested Eleven in honor of the regiment that valiantly fought under the initial direction of Colonel Lew Wallace.
Indy Eleven’s vision is to create a team that is representative of Indiana and creates strong emotional connections with its fans. Those connections – embodied in the team’s symbolic name, crest and colors – will be made with Indiana’s youth and adult soccer community and the active young adult urban and ethnic populations. The makeup of the team will reflect the community, so that it can live up to its slogan of “The World’s Game, Indiana’s Team.”