SBD/27/Franchises

NO SYMPATHY FOR THE APATHY: TOUGH NFL SELL IN AZ AND MN

     As the Cardinals begin their ninth season in Phoenix, they
face a tough obstacle to overcome -- "apathy," according to the
ARIZONA REPUBLIC.  Always several "bus-lengths" behind the Suns
in popularity, the Cardinals are in danger of falling behind ASU
football and NHL hockey.  But even if there was no other team in
Phoenix, the Cards would be "facing an uphill fight for the full
attention of the fans."  Joe Gilmartin notes Phoenix is still a
"potential gold mine" for pro football, but "the richest mines
have to be worked with the proper tools" (ARIZONA REPUBLIC,
8/27).
     PURPLE PEOPLE EATERS: In Minneapolis, Patrick Reusse notes
the "theory" that fans "still care intensely about the Vikings
... appears to be losing credibility."  Reusse: "Ticket sales
remain stagnant, yes, but what is more alarming before Sunday's
opener is the lack of Purple-laced conversation" (Minneapolis
STAR TRIBUNE, 8/27).
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