SBD/23/Franchises

SAVE THE RAMS MAY GET COAL IN THEIR STOCKING

     Save the Rams, the local group trying to keep the team in
the L.A. area, held a press conference yesterday at which Co-
Chair Leigh Steinberg admitted, "It has become abundantly clear
to us in recent weeks that the Rams plan to make a move to St.
Louis."  The group announced "Phase II" of their strategy:  They
plan to meet the other 29 NFL owners, plus NFL Commissioner Paul
Tagliabue and representatives of Fox, to discuss their offer to
the Rams and try to gather up the eight votes they would need to
block the team's move to St. Louis.  The booster group will
explain their offer, which includes a list of companies that
might build a $200M football stadium in bankrupt Orange County
and names of people "willing to invest" in the team.  Save the
Rams will also ask CA political leaders to help, and a
spokesperson for Gov. Pete Wilson said the governor -- who
received a $20,000 contribution from Rams Owner Georgia Frontiere
in his '94 re-election -- is working "behind the scenes" to keep
the team in CA (Himmelberg & Mouchard, ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER,
12/23).  Rams President John Shaw could not be reached for
comment, but sources close to negotiations said a Rams agreement
with St. Louis will not be done before January (Jim Thomas, ST.
LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, 12/22).
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