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THE NAME GAME: RAVENS, BUCS STADIUMS SEARCHING FOR IDENTITY
Published May 8, 1998
The Ravens are "still weeks, possibly months away from finalizing" a naming rights deal for their new stadium, according to Jon Morgan of the Baltimore SUN. Sprint, AT&T, AOL, Erol's Internet Service, Bell Atlantic, Cellular One and Comcast are among the companies whom the team has held talks with, and of those, "several" said the "price was too high" or that they "were not interested," while "a few" remain prospects. The team has hired ProServ to help in the sale and they are "still approaching" other companies. So far, Sprint, USAirways and MD-based Black & Decker Corp. have decided not to pursue the rights, while AT&T and Erol's have "so far declined, although sources say [they] remain in touch with the team." The Bonham Group President Dean Bonham said that the Ravens' naming rights "could go for" $1.5M-$2M a year (Jon Morgan, Baltimore SUN, 5/8). BIG BUCS: In Tampa, Pat Yasinskas reports that Bucs execs "have been talking for several weeks" with reps from TECO Energy Inc., the parent company of Tampa Electric Co., about naming rights for the team's new stadium. The Bucs "have also been talking" with Tampa-based telephone/Internet services company Intermedia and "several other corporations" since talks with TruGreen-ChemLawn "hit a snag" last month. While the team "appeared close to a deal" with TruGreen- ChemLawn in early March, at a price "believed to be about" $2M a year, sources said the price "took a significant jump" after the NFL schedule featured the Bucs playing three nationally televised games (TAMPA TRIBUNE, 5/8).