Jags Owner Supports Team's Plan In Free Agency, Says The "Hard Way Is The Right Way"
The Jaguars’ plan to “shop for less-than-established starters during the opening week of free agency” has Owner Shahid Khan’s approval, according to Ryan O’Halloran of the FLORIDA TIMES-UNION. Khan on Monday said, “One thing I’ve learned in life, you get to the fork in the road and have the easy way or the hard way. Most of the time, the hard way is the right way.” He added, “You look at the teams that are successful and (ask), ‘How did they get there?’ … A key lesson learned is you have to suck it up. Free agency is appropriate to fill some holes, but I think we proved last year that you can spend the fourth-highest (amount) and have the worst record in the league.” Meanwhile, Khan said the "best case" is for EverBank Field to have new scoreboards in August '14. He also has “seen designs of the new uniforms that are scheduled to be unveiled next month.” Khan said, “It’s sleek. It’s new age. It really represents the Jaguars.” He added the feedback from fellow owners about the Jaguars playing in London has been “incredible” (FLORIDA TIMES-UNION, 3/19). Jaguars President Mark Lamping said season-ticket renewals are “tracking well” despite the team’s 2-14 record last season. Lamping said, "We're pleased with the renewals at this point.” But he “didn't provide specific figures” (JACKSONVILLE.com, 3/18). Khan said that Jags fans "were excited about the team going to England and he anticipated a decent number of hometown fans would make the trip across the ocean." CBSSPORTS.com's Pat Kirwan noted Khan also "felt British fans would be coming to Jacksonville to see the team play" (CBSSPORTS.com, 3/19).
FITTING THE BILL: In Jacksonville, Matt Dixon reported northeast Florida officials “have begun the pitch to secure $2 million in sales tax exemptions for improvements to EverBank Field.” The bill “adds a provision to state law allowing current publicly owned stadiums to be eligible for a $2 million annual sales tax rebate over 30 years ‘in order to meet or exceed the league’s facility standard.’" The team “already has a similar $2 million annual exemption under a law that allows the use of incentive money to keep or retain teams that play at publically owned fields.” That exemption has “12 years left” (JACKSONVILLE.com, 3/18).