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PADS OWNER MOORES SEEKS HOUSTON FOOTBALL PARTNERS
Published February 15, 1996
Padres Owner John Jay Moores met with "influential businessmen" in Houston yesterday and said he is "upbeat" about putting together a package that could include public stock to attract an NFL team to replace the Oilers. According to John Williams of the HOUSTON CHRONICLE, Moores asked close to 50 business-people to "invest at least" $1M each to help buy a team, and gave the group until next week to "give an indication of interest." Moores said he also hopes to gain NFL approval for "allowing average fans to buy shares in the team," a practice "currently banned by the NFL." NFL Dir of Communications Greg Aiello said the league "has no plans to change its prohibition of public ownership." Aiello: "Those rules are there to minimize the chance that a company would transfer revenues from the football team to help another part of the corporation." Sources close to the meetings said Moores "intends to borrow as much as the $40 million maximum in debt that the NFL will allow a team to carry." He will then contribute half the remaining cash and other investors will contribute the other half. Moores reportedly won't do the deal if it means selling his stake in the Padres (HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 2/15).