SBD/January 17, 2013/Franchises

Franchise Notes

In San Diego, Michael Gehlken writes former Packers GM Ron Wolf “consulted this month in two searches” that “led to the hirings” of GM Tom Telesco and coach Mike McCoy by the Chargers. The team said that “looking back, his presence served its purpose.” Gehlken asks, “Did Wolf hire the men? No. Was he asked to be a decision-maker? No.” But he "lent his voice." Chargers Dir of College Scouting John Spanos said of hiring McCoy, “When you’re interviewing candidates who have never been a head coach, I think one of the No. 1 questions is, ‘Is this guy ready to be a head coach?’ And Ron, when it was all said and done, agreed with all of us. ‘This guy is ready. There’s no doubt. This guy is ready’” (SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE, 1/17).

OWNERS MAKING AN APPEARANCE: In Liverpool, James Pearce reports Liverpool Managing Dir Ian Ayre “insists” Fenway Sports Group co-Chair John Henry “remains totally committed to taking Liverpool FC forward.” Henry “has yet to visit Anfield so far this season,” but Ayre said that Henry “remains heavily involved in the running of the club.” Ayre said, “John’s commitment to Liverpool isn’t about him being at games. It’s about him being involved and committed and being supportive. All that happens on a consistent basis.” FSG co-Chair Tom Werner is “set to attend” the Norwich City-Liverpool game on Saturday (LIVERPOOL ECHO, 1/17).

TARP PROGRAM: In DC, Steven Goff noted MLS DC United fans this year will see a "rise for single-game seats" from the '12 price range of $23-52 to a range of $26-55. For the second consecutive year, DC United "will not sell tickets in the upper deck of the 45,000-seat stadium, except for special events." To cover empty space in the upper deck, the club last year "proposed selling advertising tarps," but no corporate sponsorships "have been reached to enact such a plan" (WASHINGTONPOST.com, 1/15).

SINKING SHIP? In Virginia, Tom Robinson reported the UFL Virginia Destroyers "owe a lot of people a lot of money." The "lion's share" is roughly $2M unpaid to coaches and players that played four games before the league's October announcement that it would cancel the season and resume play in the spring. But the team also has "left local fans searching in vain for refunds and local vendors for payment of bills." Destroyers President John Wuehrmann yesterday wrote in a text message the team's ownership is "still very engaged in finding a solution to fix the problem." Wuehrmann: "(I'm) confident that it will get cleaned up. Just not sure exactly when" (Norfolk VIRGINIAN-PILOT, 1/16).
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