SBD/Issue 211/Sports Industrialists

Names In The News

Saints' Super Bowl Success Sees Benson (l),
Payton (r) Near Top Of Times-Picayune's List

The Saints' "unprecedented success and fame" is why the team dominates the New Orleans Times-Picayune rankings of the "most power/influential people on the south Louisiana sports scene." Saints Owner TOM BENSON ranked No. 1 for the second consecutive year, and he has "plenty of company at the top." Saints QB Drew Brees ranked No. 2, Saints coach SEAN PAYTON ranked No. 3, and Saints GM MICKEY LOOMIS ranked No. 6. The rest of the top 10 included Hornets Owner GEORGE SHINN at No. 4, Hornets G CHRIS PAUL at No. 5, SMG Regional VP Doug Thornton at No. 7, Cox Sports Television VP/Regional Sports ROD MICKLER at No. 8, LSU football coach LES MILES at No. 9 and LSU AD JOE ALLEVA at No. 10 (New Orleans TIMES-PICAYUNE, 7/18).

ISSUES TO SKATE AROUND: In Salt Lake City, Michael Lewis noted new U.S. Speedskating Exec Dir MARK GREENWALD "started work last week," and he is "hopeful and confident that he can smooth what has become a turbulent ride for one of the nation's most successful winter sports federations." Long- and short-track speedskaters accounted for 10 of the 37 medals the U.S. won at the '10 Vancouver Games, but Greenwald "expects to have his hands full" due to the "financial strain caused by a sponsorship drought amid a poor economy ... [and] the dismissal of most coaches and a hopeful but skeptical group of athletes." Greenwald "aspires to find new sponsors around the world, improve coaching development, reconnect with alumni and use his collaborative skills and sport-building experience ... to build an enviable program." But he first "must hire a new high-performance director, figure out the budget, and formulate a plan for the build-up to" the '14 Sochi Games (SALT LAKE TRIBUNE, 7/18).

INTERNATIONAL MAN OF MYSTERY: The N.Y. TIMES’ Katie Thomas profiled IOC President JACQUES ROGGE, who said he begins working “at close to 8 o’clock.” Rogge: “My normal day would be being briefed about the world media, and I get the highlights of the day. Then I would have individual visits by many people visiting Lausanne.” He added he travels often, because he needs “to have face time.” Rogge: “There is no way you can run such an organization with just e-mails, videoconferencing or telephone calls” (N.Y. TIMES, 7/18).

FLY LIKE AN EAGLE: In Philadelphia, Mike Jensen profiles Eagles GM HOWIE ROSEMAN under the header, “Howie Roseman Relentlessly Pursued NFL Dream.” Roseman, 35, was promoted to the GM role earlier this year and now has a “seat at the oval table, often right next” to Eagles coach ANDY REID and across from President JOE BANNER. Roseman said, “I think one of the reasons I’m in this role here is because I have strong opinions that I hope to back up with information” (PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 7/19).

BASKETBALL ORIGINS: A "larger-than-life statue" of DR. JAMES NAISMITH "will be unveiled later this year" in Almonte, Ontario. Identical bronze statues "showing Naismith seated on a bench with a ball and two peach baskets" have been created "for the site in downtown Almonte, for a second site near the Springfield, Mass., gymnasium where the first games were played in 1891, and for the University of Kansas campus where Naismith spent most of his career coaching students and guiding basketball's early evolution" (Montreal GAZETTE, 7/17).

NAMES: Former Univ. of North Carolina men's basketball coach DEAN SMITH's family in a letter said Smith has a "progressive neurocognitive disorder that affects his memory." Rumors about Smith's condition had "spun so out of control, a school spokesman had to confirm last week that Smith is still alive." Smith's wife LINNEA said it is a "complex medical diagnosis," and is "in a category of progressive memory disorders, and we're staying away from labels" (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 7/18)....The Pro Basketball HOF “will conduct a week of festivities" beginning August 7 in advance of the induction of the ’60 and ’92 U.S. Olympic men’s basketball teams. HOFers MICHAEL JORDAN, LARRY BIRD, MAGIC JOHNSON, OSCAR ROBERTSON and JERRY WEST all are expected to be in attendance (Springfield REPUBLICAN, 7/16)….Heat F LEBRON JAMES reportedly has “started paperwork to purchase” a $49.5M, 20,088-square-foot mansion at Casuarina Concourse -- the “most expensive home in Coral Gables, Fla., area” (LIFEANDSTYLEMAG.com, 7/15).

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