Monday, March 9, 2015


After 5 Years, AEG Abandons Plans for Downtown L.A. NFL Stadium

A still from an animation created for AEG's planned Farmers Field project shows an overhead view.
A still from an animation created for AEG's planned Farmers Field project shows an overhead view.
After investing five years and at least $50 million in an attempt to return the NFL to Los Angeles, AEG is abandoning plans for a downtown stadium.
The sports and entertainment conglomerate is no longer in discussions with the NFL or any teams about the Farmers Field project, company officials told The Times on Monday. AEG was the onetime front-runner in the competition to bring professional football back to the nation’s second-largest market.
“I think it’s fair to say we have turned our attention to proceeding with an alternative development,” AEG Vice Chairman Ted Fikre said.
Fikre said that AEG has informed city officials that it will not seek an extension of an April 17 deadline to secure a team. The deadline was previously extended six months.
Click here to read the full story on LATimes.com.


It all being with Jim Harbaugh's departure. Now, with many veterans leaving the franchise, and the rumor involving a Colin Kaepernick trade, it appears the 49ers brass are cleaning house and not leaving the team with components to ensure what most consider the remote possibility of having a winning season in 2015. Most ardent 49ers fans are contemplating the pre-Harbuagh 49ers where 2-14 season became the norm. What are the possible explanations for these actions? I'm curious to know if these are cost cutting measure related to any fiscal obligations of Levi's Stadium. Whatever the case, I believe the 49ers have some explaining to do. Also, the City of Santa Clara/Stadium Authority has been pretty silent on the revenues/expenses of the stadium. I wonder why that is............

Which 49ers are candidates to become cap casualties?

The 49ers have yet to make any cost-cutting moves this offseason. A year ago, they released veteran cornerback Carlos Rogers to gain cap relief.
Recently, general manager Trent Baalke all but guaranteed tight end Vernon Davis would be on the team in 2015. The 49ers could have saved $4.9 million in cap space with his release.
And Baalke strongly suggested the 49ers were committed to paying linebackers Patrick Willis and NaVorro Bowman their full salaries for the upcoming season, too. Willis, who is scheduled to earn $8.315 million, is a strong candidate for a restructured deal that would pay him his full amount while significantly reducing his salary-cap figure.
Teams that make post-June 1 designations on their releases create cap savings the equivalent of the player’s scheduled salary for the upcoming year. But the remaining proration on the contract accounts for “dead money” on the next season’s cap.
Here are some of the other players with high salaries scheduled for the upcoming season and how much money they could save with post-June 1 designations:
QB Colin Kaepernick: The 49ers could save $12.8 million in cap space, but there is no chance they are going to part ways with a player they still envision as their long-term quarterback.
OLB Aldon Smith: The 49ers picked up the fifth-year option at $9.754 million for this season. Their defense is dependent on him returning to elite status as a pass rusher before potentially becoming a free agent in 2016.
OLB Ahmad Brooks: His salary de-escalated due to his down season, but the 49ers would still save $4.35 million if they parted ways. Aaron Lynch is seemingly ready to take over as an every-down player in his second season.
WR Stevie Johnson: Is he a $6 million receiver? Baalke declined to answer that question at the NFL Scouting Combine. After the 49ers invested a fourth-round pick in him, it would not be wise to get rid of him after just one season. Johnson has yet to be approached about a possible pay cut from his $6.025 million salary, a source told CSNBayArea.com. As long as the 49ers are comfortably under the cap, there’s no hurry to resolve this issue.
WR Anquan Boldin: Is he a $6 million receiver? The correct answer is yes. He had his second consecutive 1,000-yard season since coming to the 49ers in a 2013 trade. And there's no question he's the No. 1 receiver with Michael Crabtree scheduled to hit free agency.
K Phil Dawson: He was not as rock solid last season as he was in his first year with the 49ers. He made 80.6 percent of his field goal attempts (25 of 31), and that was his lowest percentage since 2006. If the 49ers release him (that’s risky, without an replacement), it would save the team $3.134 million.
S Craig Dahl: He accepted a pay cut in February of last year to avoid getting cut. He is scheduled to $1.7 million in salary and bonuses.
OT Jonathan Martin: Former coach Jim Harbaugh was instrumental in acquiring Martin to serve as a backup. The 49ers would like to upgrade their “swing tackle,” so Martin is not safe with his scheduled $1.042 million salary.
DL Justin Smith: The 49ers are certainly not going to cut him. But if he retires, the 49ers would save $4.25 million in cap space. Smith has contemplated retirement after each of the past three or four seasons. The answer every offseason has been “one more year.” He is scheduled to enter the final year of the contract he negotiated for himself in June 2013.

Saturday, February 21, 2015


The people of that city shouldn't get too happy about this proposal. It should be noted that no one has stated who will own the stadium. Whenever they say, "No taxapayer money will be used to construct the stadium," that can turn out to not be the case. It costs money to operate an NFL stadium. And with so many other stadiums in the Los Angeles basin, profitable events will be hard to come by. Just look at Levi's Stadium. We still don't know if there is enough money to pay for the first year of operational expenses.

Carson launches campaign to build NFL stadium, lure Chargers, Raiders

By Sandy Mazza, Daily Breeze

Raiders fans welcomed the press conference in Carson, announcing plans for a stadium that could host both the current San Diego Chargers and Oakland Raiders. (Brad Graverson/Daily Breeze). 
If history is any predictor, plans for a Carson stadium to host the San Diego Chargers and Oakland Raiders will fall apart.
But it won’t be for lack of enthusiasm and effort in the city of Carson, where a petition drive kicked off Friday morning with a press conference near City Hall attended by union members waving team flags, politicians predicting an economic boon for the region and civic and business leaders pronouncing their commitment.
Early plans call for a futuristic stadium design and the promise of financing from Goldman Sachs Group Inc. The National Football Leaguehas yet to comment about an actual deal, but city officials said the league and both teams are interested. They believe public pressure could make a difference this time around.
In the late 1990s — after the Rams and Raiders both bolted from Los Angeles — a proposal to build a stadium on the same former landfill site alongside the 405 Freeway at Del Amo Boulevard fell through. A similar plan died in 2005, and rumors of negotiations have since periodically surfaced. But nothing more than that, until Friday.
Carson officials believe the third time’s the charm.
“This is an enormous opportunity for the people of Carson,” Mayor Jim Dear said. “It will change the city in a dramatic way forever.”
City Council members praised the plans and cheered on a group of residents formed to represent the city’s various special interests and to pressure the league and its teams to move to the 168-acre site. It is the largest undeveloped single piece of freeway-adjacent land in Los Angeles County.
The site, which is home to several closed landfills and an ongoing environmental remediation effort to clear out hazardous underground chemicals, was most recently set to house a massive commercial, residential and entertainment complex called the Boulevards at South Bay. City officials confirmed this week that the Boulevards plan is dead, and that the Chargers and Raiders now “control” the land, though it is owned by investment firm Starwood Capital Group.
Carson2gether, a group of community leaders formed to gather thousands of residents’ signatures in support of the plan, will work through the next phase of approvals needed to make the stadium plan a reality. A ballot initiative must be filed once signatures are secured, and then the issue can presented to the council officially as a ballot measure.
“This is about community spirit, community pride, economic development and jobs,” said Fred MacFarlane, spokesman for Carson2gether. “It’s about the city’s future. It’s about coming together with civic leaders, business leaders, religious leaders and labor groups all with a common goal: to convince the residents of this community that a proposed stadium project is an opportunity to be seized in this community.”
Leaders of Carson’s Filipino, Samoan, African-American and Latino communities have joined with religious leaders and labor groups in the campaign to bring the teams to town. The project would create thousands of union jobs, and hiring preference would be given to veterans and locals.
“I was excited before, about 20 years ago,” said Carson Planning Commission Chairman Loa Pele Faletogo. “Don’t disappoint us, NFL. I hope this will come to fruition. Carson will do its part. NFL, please do your part.”
At Friday’s news conference, officials said the new stadium would cost $1.3 billion to $1.7 billion and would be financed in a public-private partnership similar to the one used to build the new Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara for the San Francisco 49ers. A representative from Goldman Sachs confirmed that the investment firm will provide the financing structure to build the Carson stadium, which would ultimately pay for itself through luxury boxes, seat licensing and other revenues.
City officials emphasized that taxpayers won’t be on the hook to fund the project, though Levi’s Stadium did use public loans. The stadium would be suitable for two team franchises, the Super Bowl, college bowl games as well as concerts and other events.
Carson Councilman Albert Robles said he’s optimistic about this plan coming together because the Chargers initiated the talks, and it’s the first time the city has had interest from teams.
“The Chargers reached out and they wanted to see if the city was interested,” Robles said. “We expressed a willingness to talk to them. The conversation was kind of built from there.
“In the past, there has never been a team attached. This time, not only do we have one team, but we have two teams. That’s what makes this much more real and much more viable. And makes me believe that it’s going to happen.”
At the least, the announcement has shaken things up in San Diego and Oakland, whose football teams are threatening to leave because they can’t get new stadiums, and in Inglewood, where the latest NFL stadium plan was announced about a month ago by St. Louis Rams owner Stan Kroenke. He wants to build on the site of the old Hollywood Park racetrack. Some league officials believe the Rams knew a Raiders and Chargers announcement was imminent and moved quickly to beat them to the punch.
“Although we knew that Mr. Kroenke had purchased land there in Inglewood, we didn’t think there was really any forward movement on it because we didn’t hear anything for the longest time,” Robles said. “Next thing we know, they are making an announcement and they have stadium renderings and they have it all financially figured out.
“But, back in St. Louis, they are going to fight to keep the team and they were going to pay for a brand-new stadium for them.”
Stadium plans floated in the City of Industry and downtown Los Angeles have lost momentum while the Inglewood and Carson projects have blossomed.
In light of Carson’s announcement, San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer said the city is still working to keep its team.
“It’s now abundantly clear that while we have been working here in San Diego to create a plan for a new stadium, the Chargers have for some time been making their own plans for moving to Los Angeles,” Faulconer said in a statement Thursday night. “This would amount to abandoning generations of loyal Chargers fans. Despite this news, we are going to continue our efforts to develop a viable stadium solution.”
The NFL has set a stringent relocation policy regarding Los Angeles, and any relocation would be subject to a league review and a vote by fellow owners. Ultimately, it would require 24 votes of approval from the 32 team owners.
The Chargers and Raiders jointly announced on their websites their plan to simultaneously pursue new stadium deals in their current markets while also developing the Carson project.
“We have both been working in our home markets to find a stadium solution for many years, so far unsuccessfully,” the clubs said in a statement. “We remain committed to continuing to work in our home markets throughout 2015 to try to find publicly acceptable solutions to the long-term stadium issue.”
Meanwhile, Carson’s leadership is on a mission to finally bring a professional football team, thousands of jobs, and the promise of huge city profits to town.
“We can bring these teams to Carson, but it’s going to take a united effort,” said Councilwoman Lula Davis-Holmes. “Who would have thought that not one, but two, teams would want to come to Carson? Yes, we can! Yes, we will have the NFL back in Los Angeles, in Carson!”
Staff Writer Vincent Bonsignore contributed to this report.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Friday, January 23, 2015



Mayor of Glendale, Arizona, Expects City to Lose Money by Hosting Super Bowl

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Mayor of Glendale, Arizona, Expects City to Lose Money by Hosting Super Bowl
Matt York/Associated Press
Debating the economic benefits to cities and countries that host major sporting events like the World Cup or the Olympics is nothing new. New facilities are built, billions of dollars are spent hosting the event, and some years, people are even displaced from their homes.
That conversation traditionally hasn't extended to more domestic events like the Super Bowl, however, because the stadiums are in place and the event is simply a one-day affair. But now, Glendale mayor Jerry Weiers has suggested Super Bowl XLIX may not be such an economic boon for the area.
"I totally believe we will lose money on this," he told Mina Kimes of ESPN The Magazine, adding, "This Super Bowl was promised before I became mayor. There wasn't any backing out."
Per Kimes' report, Weiers projected the city would lose more than $3 million hosting the Super Bowl, and a bill that would have helped the city receive reimbursement from the state didn't make it through the Senate. Weiers also claimed that Glendale lost over $1 million when the city hosted Super Bowl XLII in 2008.
Arizona Cardinals' owner Michael Bidwill has staunchly refuted Weiers' claims.
"Recently, they've been telling people that they lost money on the Super Bowl, which is a bunch of malarkey," he told Bob McClay of KTAR News back in September. "They were telling people after that Super Bowl that they made a lot of money, and that they had about $13 million worth of media exposure to the city of Glendale."
It isn't surprising that Bidwill would be perturbed with Weiers. He surely wants the Cardinals' facility to host the NFL's biggest game in years to come. 
It sounds as though Weiers won't be keen to allow that to happen, however. When his bill failed to pass in April, he questioned how the city could afford to host the Super Bowl in the future.
In other words, the battle between the NFL, Bidwill and Weiers might just be heating up. 

Monday, January 5, 2015


Just to be clear on a few things, The 49ers are not obligated to  $24.5 million in annual lease payments. To my understanding, their fixed annual rent payments to the Stadium Authority are $5 million per year. Anything over that amount is based on many hypothetical scenarios. If something has changed, I have yet to read about it.
Why don't they reveal how much money are in the accounts being allocated for the liabilities of the Stadium Authority? 
The operative term from Gary Ameling is "anticipated". In other words, the current cash accounts of the Stadium Authority may not be enough to pay for all of the stadium liabilities.

From Santa Clara Weekly:

Levi's Stadium Financials Healthy

At the meeting, the Council accepted the Stadium Authority's audited financials for the last fiscal year - April 1, 2013 through March 30, 2014. Candidate for Mayor and long-time stadium opponent Deborah Bress noted that the report shows liabilities exceeding assets by $12 million.
That would make for some political "I told you so" fodder for stadium opponents - except that the number doesn't reflect stadium operations. It reflects the construction progress total as of March 30, and an accounting change mandated by the Government Accounting Standards Board (GASB) that restricts classifying items as "deferred," explained City Finance Director Gary Ameling.
"GASB 65 requires us to fully put on to our books the future debt payments, so this is an accounting issue rather than an issue with respect to the Stadium Authority, "explained Ameling.
"The current plan ... is still anticipated to be fully covering all the debt payments," he continued. The Stadium Authority's revenue - including the 49ers $24.5 million lease payment, naming rights, the 10 percent city surcharge on NFL tickets, and Seat Builder Licenses (SBL) - is still anticipated to fully cover all the debt service and stadium operating costs. Plus, the overall construction debt of $653 million is well over the $950 million that the financing was originally set up to provide.
"The SBL sales is a good news item," Ameling added. "Over 95 percent have been sold as of the date of the audit, and virtually all the remaining SBLs have been sold since then." Further, SBL sales have raised $500 million and over $300 million in cash payments.

Sunday, December 28, 2014



Jim Harbaugh leaving NFL 

to take over at Michigan, per reports

By  on Dec 28 2014, 12:58p 
Michigan has reportedly found its man to replace Brady Hoke. Former Wolverines quarterback Jim Harbaugh will be hired to lead his alma mater, according to Michigan author John U. Bacon, as the Wolverines were able to lure him away from the NFL and his contentious yet successful run with the San Francisco 49ers. This follows a report by Brian Cook of MGoBlog that set the likelihood of Harbaugh's return to Ann Arbor at 99 percent.

"Jim Harbaugh is coming to Michigan," Bacon tweeted Sunday night, "and his friends are flying in Monday."

Update, December 28: "Jim Harbaugh's family is flying to Ann Arbor Monday," FOX Sports' Bruce Feldman tweeted Sunday. "Harbaugh will be Wolverines new head coach." Multiple NFL reporters said earlier Sunday that the Raiders still hope to try for him.
He was reportedly offered a six-year, $48 million deal, which would make him the highest-paid college coach in the country if true.
Harbaugh was often touted as the dream hire for Michigan, due to his connections with the school and his success at every single coaching spot. In 2013, Harbaugh said Ann Arbor was his "favorite place to live," and his family and friends had reportedly been encouraging him to take the Michigan job. The Michigan community was also in support of hiring Harbaugh, as prominent names all spoke out in favor of the move.Other names floated around were LSU head coach Les Miles, former Rutgers/Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Greg Schiano, and Harbaugh's brother, Baltimore Ravens head coach John Harbaugh.

Harbaugh played from Michigan from 1983-86 under former head coach Bo Schembechler, setting the Division I-A career passing efficiency record and leading the Wolverines to a Fiesta Bowl victory and a Rose Bowl berth. After an NFL career that spanned more than a decade, Harbaugh spent time on his father Jack Harbaugh's staff at Western Kentucky University and was hired as the quarterbacks coach for the Oakland Raiders from 2002-03, including their run to Super Bowl XXVII.

Harbaugh earned his first head coaching opportunity at FCS San Diego in 2004, posting a 29-6 record in three seasons. He was hired as Stanford's head coach prior to 2007, building the much-aligned Cardinal program into a Pac-12 power in just four years. Stanford won eight games in 2009 and 12 in 2010, including an Orange Bowl victory, a new program standard of excellence since continued by current head coach David Shaw.

Harbaugh was hired by the 49ers prior to 2011, making the NFC Championship Game in each of his first three seasons with a Super Bowl berth in 2012. San Francisco is 7-8 this year, already a tenure-high loss total for Harbaugh. His stock remains high, however, as multiple NFL teams were reportedly hoping to hire him after his anticipated Niners exit.