NFL NEWS & NOTES: NO RESOLUTION ON BROWNS
NFL officials meeting this week on the probable loss of
Cleveland discussed a number of possible resolutions to the
situation, but arrived at no consensus, according to the
Baltimore SUN. The meetings included NFL Commissioner Paul
Tagliabue, NFL President Neil Austrian and the Broncos Owner Pat
Bowlen, Chair of the NFL's Broadcast Committee, Saints Owner Tom
Benson, Chair of the NFL Finance Committee, and Browns Exec VP
James Bailey. Jon Morgan reports that among the options
discussed were getting another team for the city, or passing a
resolution demonstrating an intent to eventually move a team
there, as the NFL did with L.A. The stadium and finance
committees are scheduled to hold a joint meeting on January 4 to
review the Browns' relocation application. Both the team and
Cleveland Mayor Michael White will be given the opportunity to
make presentations. The full NFL ownership vote on the matter is
still scheduled for January 17 ( Baltimore SUN, 12/15).
ALL EYES ON ART MODELL: The WALL STREET JOURNAL John Helyar
profiles Browns Owner Art Modell's history in Cleveland and the
decisions that led to the move in a front-page piece (WALL STREET
JOURNAL, 12/15). ESPN's "Outside the Lines" presents a special
on franchise movement tonight, live from Cleveland. ESPN's Bob
Ley said Modell's attorneys prevented an interview. Also, the
Akron BEACON JOURNAL reports NBC's Bob Costas will be in
Cleveland for a pregame show Sunday from Modell's box (Akron
BEACON JOURNAL, 12/15). L.A. COLISEUM IS OUT: L.A. City
Council President John Ferraro, who is also head of the Coliseum
Commission, said he was told this week by NFL officials that the
L.A. Coliseum will not be considered as a permanent venue for
football, according to the L.A. TIMES. While Ferraro disagrees
with the assessment, he thinks the city should move on rather
than fight. He said he would support Dodgers Owner Peter
O'Malley in his efforts to build a stadium and get a team.
Panthers Owner Jerry Richardson, Chair of the NFL Stadium
Committee, has toured all L.A. stadium sites, including the
Coliseum, and he says that if football is going to be successful
in L.A., a state-of-the-art facility will have to be built.
Richardson: "Los Angeles is a very special city, we have had good
experiences there with Super Bowls, but it just doesn't make
sense to go back with warmed over, renovated stadiums" (T.J.
Simers, L.A. TIMES, 12/15).