SBD/21/Leagues Governing Bodies

PROF. MICHAELS LECTURES ON THE STATE OF THE NFL

     During halftime of "Monday Night Football" last night, ABC's
Al Michaels delivered a video op-ed on the problems facing the
NFL.  Michaels opened by describing the league as "spinning off
its axis."  He continued, "The NFL will likely soon lay claim to
the dubious honor of becoming the first major professional sports
organization in North America ever to witness four franchise
shifts in a two year period and things are just heating up. ...
Now we're being told that circumvention of that cap is behind all
these franchise moves so that teams can remain competitive.
Excuse me!  What's behind these moves is an old game played in
sophisticated ways.  The cities of St. Louis, Baltimore, Oakland
and Nashville stood on street corners whistling, 'Hey, sailor.'
And the Rams, Raiders, Browns and Oilers crossed the street and
made the whistlers pay to boot. ... Perhaps scariest of all is
the fact the old guard owners are the ones on the move" ("MNF,"
ABC, 11/20).
     NEW LEAGUE:  USA TODAY's Gordon Forbes reports the 16-team
Fan Football League, proposed by USFL Founder Dave Dixon, would
play a 24-game schedule from September to March.  Dixon, who
claims to have received "tremendous response," promises the FFL
would play in "top markets" (warm-weather and dome cities), with
"the best stadiums," and "big-name coaches" (USA TODAY, 11/21).
     VIEWING NOTE:  Tonight, PBS' "Nightly Business Report" will
feature a segment on the business of pro football ("Nightly
Business Report," 11/20).
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