SBD/Issue 168/Leagues & Governing Bodies

NFL Owners Meetings: Indy Selected To Host Super Bowl XLVI

 
The NFL yesterday named Indianapolis as host of Super Bowl XLVI over Houston and Glendale. The game will be held at Lucas Oil Stadium on February 5, 2012. Indianapolis won the game after last year losing the right to host Super Bowl XLV to Dallas (Mult., 5/20). Colts Owner Jim Irsay: “It was tough not getting it after last year, but it’s all worth it right now” (INDYSTAR.com, 5/20). In Phoenix, Carrie Watters reports the voting took four rounds, with Houston being "knocked out in the second round." NFL Cardinals President Michael Bidwill said of the Glendale bid, "We're encouraged by how close we came. It's clear the league wants to come. It's just a matter of when." Watters notes Arizona officials "likely will be back next spring to bid for" Super Bowl XLVII in 2013 (ARIZONA REPUBLIC, 5/21). Texans Owner Bob McNair: "I have to admit that I'm shocked that we weren't one of the (two) finalists. I thought our presentation was superior" (HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 5/21).

BACKBONE OF BID: In Indianapolis, O'Shaughnessy & Chappell report Indianapolis won the hosting rights with a "unique gambit: plans to transform a downtrodden Near-Eastside neighborhood in a project meant to create a lasting legacy." The centerpiece of the bid was a $9M athletic facility at Tech High School that would serve as a practice facility for the Super Bowl, which NFL officials and team owners cited as a "key factor in choosing Indianapolis." NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell: "That's a facility that will be used for many generations by people who play sports. I think that's a great thing for the NFL and the community." Irsay: "A lot of times, people think it's just about big numbers and big money, but it's also about big hearts." Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard said that he "expects the city to have to pay [$1-2M] for public safety support but estimated the game would generate an economic impact of at least $100[M] and up to $20[M] in tax revenue." The bid committee raised $25M in "private pledges to build the facility, host the parties and turn Downtown into a Super Bowl Village that will draw tens of thousands of visitors despite frigid temperatures" (INDIANAPOLIS STAR, 5/21).

Writer Believes Irsay Deserves 
Credit For Landing Super Bowl
COLTS CONTRIBUTE: ESPN.com's Pat Yasinskas wrote, "Don't forget to give some credit to Jim Irsay and [Colts coach] Tony Dungy. They're the ones who built the foundation for the glitzy new stadium that's about to open in downtown Indianapolis. They're the ones who made football matter in a city (and a state) where basketball always has dominated." Irsay: "This is the completion of a chapter in some ways of the last decade. ... We began our climb to excellence with a Super Bowl win and building this new stadium. I felt this was the one piece of the puzzle that had to get put into place to tie all that together." Central Indiana Corporate Partnership CEO Mark Miles, who led Indianapolis' bid, said, "In so many respects, Jim Irsay has led this effort. It simply doesn't happen without his leadership and the respect he has in that owners' room and around the league. He was really the person in Indianapolis that said, 'We can't quit. We've got to stay at this. Indianapolis is a Super Bowl city'" (ESPN.com, 5/20).

GAME WILL INCREASE CITY'S PROFILE: Greater Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce President Roland Dorson "views the Super Bowl as a global coming-out party for the city." Dorson: "For many people around the country and the world, there really isn't a clear image of Indianapolis. I think we're beginning to be recognized as a destination town, and this just enhances the cachet that we have" (INDIANAPOLIS STAR, 5/21). An INDIANAPOLIS STAR editorial states, "The benefits of staging the nation's most high-profile annual event go well beyond a well-deserved shot of pride for the city and its residents" (INDIANAPOLIS STAR, 5/21). In Indianapolis, Bob Kravitz writes, "This is for the movers and the shakers, the visionaries who had the foresight and the insight to position Indianapolis as a sports city back in the 1970s. This is for all the thousands of volunteers, who, for the past 30 years, made it possible for Indianapolis to host so many major sports events" (INDIANAPOLIS STAR, 5/21).

IN OTHER MEETING NEWS: Goodell yesterday at the NFL Owners meetings said that the league will "begin fining teams under its personal conduct policy." Goodell said that the NFL will receive a "portion of the player's withheld pay whenever a player is suspended under the policy," and the percentage that goes to the league will "increase for subsequent violations by players from the same team" (WASHINGTON POST, 5/21). Goodell also said that the NFL has “no plans to conduct an independent investigation of the Patriots’ videotaping procedures at this time.” U.S. Sen. Arlen Specter (R-PA) has “pressured the league to do so, but Goodell reiterated his feelings that the league’s investigation was sound and thorough” (BOSTON.com, 5/20).

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