SBD/19/Collegiate Sports

NCAA FOOTBALL HALL OF FAME LOOKS TO SECURE FINANCIAL FOOTING

          The College Football Hall of Fame in South Bend, IN, "is
     struggling" with attendance, as Exec Dir Bernie Kish said
     that early projections were "overly ambitious" and corporate
     sponsorship "hasn't approached the levels officials had
     envisioned," according to Teddy Greenstein of the CHICAGO
     TRIBUNE.  The Hall recorded an operating loss of "more than"
     $660,000 in '96, its inaugural year.  Although city officials
     originally promised that no taxpayer money would be used, the
     city has already contributed "about" $1.6M.  The National
     Football Foundation (NFF) has also provided $1M, which
     Greenstein writes "may be just a start."  The Hall is
     projecting '97 attendance at 65,000 -- down from the 120,000
     visitors in its first year (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 11/18).
          CORPORATE ISSUES: The Hall had "hoped to line up seven
     major sponsors" at $1M each, but deals were made with Alka-
     Selzer, Coca-Cola, Burger King and the U.S. Postal Service,
     totalling just $1.725M.  Kish: "It has been surprising.  The
     feeling was that corporate sponsors were going to be a piece
     of cake."  With a $400,000 marketing budget, the Hall will
     advertise on billboards and in Chicago newspapers and radio
     stations.  Officials are seeking NCAA approval for an annual
     Hall of Fame game to be played in August.  Greenstein added
     that "despite all the effort, the Hall shows no sign of
     breaking even anytime soon," and that without a "dramatic
     increase" in sponsors, taxpayers will see the annual
     contribution rise from $1.2M to $2M (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 11/18).

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Burger King, Coca-Cola, Colleges, NCAA

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