Monday, June 18, 2007

Football News

Due to business travel over the last few weeks I have read several different newspapers where I noticed the following football stories that are worth commenting on:

  • Minnesota Vikings -- Skol Vikings, honor your name!!! This is my National Football League team win or lose which has been mostly "lose" for a few years now. Last week the Vikings owner, Zygi Wilf, hosted his first "board of advisors" meeting which consists of "25 local business leaders" who will meet "one or two times per year." Okay, so the Vikings generated a one day or two day story from this announcement but I can't see much else coming from it because this group will only meet once or twice a year and because it is a large group of 25 rather busy people including some Fortune 500 CEOs. Mr. Wilf no doubt wants this group's advice on how to win government support for building a new football stadium. The reality is he does not need this board -- he need a winning football team on the field!!! Also, he completely missed the opportunity to partner with the University of Minnesota to build a joint-stadium with the Gophers. Imagine how the Gophers football program would benefit in its recruiting program by having an NFL-quality stadium and imagine how the Vikings would benefit from an on-campus location. University of Minnesota alumni could show up on Saturday for a Gophers game and stay overnight for the Sunday game for the Vikings when schedules allow. The other missed opportunity was the lack of condos that should have been built into the Gophers football stadium which alums would no doubt be willing to buy.
  • Mid America Football League --, I have to admit I lost track of the two Minnesota teams playing in this league until I read an Iowa newspaper last week that mentioned that the Iowa Threshers were playing against the two Minnesota teams in August and September this year. I look forward to attending a game this season to check the level of competition and of course to purchase a "Lumberjacks" t-shirt if available!! the MAFL has been in operation since 1995 and plans an annual "All American Bowl" which serves as its all star game.
  • Friday Nights -- Dallas Mavericks' (National Basketball Association) owner Mark Cuban recently announced he is involved in an investors group which is considering starting a new football league to "compete" with the National Football League. I say "compete" because this new league plans to play its games on Friday nights thus "competing" for eyeballs with high school football games. The NFL has seen a number of alternative leagues over the years so Cuban's venture is not a new one so let me offer his group an option to consider. Negotiate deals with major college teams (at least for the first two seasons perhaps) to play your games one hour after the college football game ends on Saturday which allows this new league to keep its overhead down while also getting the "spill over" of fans from the college game. Some key college football towns/NFL markets that the "Cuban Football League" (CFL) should consider include -- 1.) Los Angeles/UCLA/USC because that is a great football market that does not have an NFL team today, 2.) Chicago/Northwestern -- Northwestern has had good and bad teams but it is still a major football market especially in Chicago which is a big enough city for both the NFL and the CFL , 3.) Miami/University of Miami -- again a very large city with a great football fan base with the University of Miami's history and the NFL's Dolphins of course. A Saturday night football game in all three of these cities in the Fall would be an ideal night on the town.

Pre-season is drawing near,


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