ESPN's Chris Mortensen reported that the Rams do not have the 3/4 votes from NFL owners necessary to approve a move to St. Louis. According to high ranking NFL officials and owners, Mortensen said the Rams "just didn't prove their case" at the recent owners meetings in Dallas. Mortensen: "The initial finding being that the poor state of the Anaheim franchise has been exaggerated, the team has not been managed properly and the team may just be on a money grab that has complex revenue sharing issues." Mortensen said the Rams may be forced to share their "windfall" with the league in order to get approval. If Rams Owner Georgia Frontiere wants her "own personal fortune" out of the deal, the league may suggest she sell her share to Stan Kroenke, a "purchase the league would like done in a reasonable amount of time." If Frontiere "balks at such an arrangement," then "who knows what will happen" ("SportsCenter," ESPN, 2/23).
The Carolina Panthers will have the second highest average ticket price in the NFL, with only the Cowboys charging more, according to this morning's CHARLOTTE OBSERVER. Panthers Dir of Sales Phil Youtsey says fans can expect to pay "approximately $40" for each game in the team's inaugural season, with prices ranging from $19-$65 a ticket. The figure will not include the cost of personal seat licenses, which will not be required until the team moves to its permanent home in Charlotte in '96. Team officials say the high price is necessary due to high start-up costs, the franchise entry fee and the lack of full revenue- sharing over the next three years. The figures are based on a "confidential survey" recently completed by an unnamed NFL team. The league average for next season, according to the survey, is expected to be just over $32 a ticket. Next season's top four ticket prices: Dallas ($42.50); Carolina ($40); San Francisco ($39.75) and Jacksonville ($37) (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 2/24). DOLPHINS RAISE PRICES: The Dolphins will raise their ticket prices for '95 to an average of $32.57/seat. Prices will increase $2-$5 across the board except for about 3,300 seats that will drop from $20 to $17. This is the second consecutive year the team has raised prices. The team currently is 10th in the league in average ticket prices (Armando Salguero, MIAMI HERALD, 2/24).