Chargers execs today "will hold their first face-to-face meeting" with members of San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer's staff to discuss a new stadium, but Special Counsel to the President Mark Fabiani "described the upcoming meeting as more of an information-gathering session" than anything else, according to Eric Williams of ESPN.com. Fabiani yesterday told San Diego-based XEPRS-AM, "It's what all of us hope for the city -- is that this mayor stays around for a while. We've had seven mayors here in the last 10 years, and we've never been able to gather any momentum." He added that while a downtown location is preferred, the team is "open to considering other locations for the project, including the Qualcomm Stadium site." Fabiani: "We've gone into these discussions with the new mayor with a completely open mind. ... But if we could find something that worked downtown, there would be a lot going for that. If we could find something that worked at the Qualcomm site, I think we would be happy with that, too." He added, "One of the real attractions to downtown is the ability to create a sports and entertainment district that would really be unrivaled in this country." Fabiani acknowledged that the "main goal" for the Spanos family, which owns the team, "remains keeping the Chargers in San Diego." Fabiani: "Just look at what they've done in the last 12 years -- the amount of money they've spent and the amount of aggravation they've gone through and the frustration we've all experienced. But they've stuck with it" (ESPN.com, 4/8).
The construction manager of the EverBank Field renovations yesterday said that the $63M project is "on schedule and on budget," according to Vito Stellino of the FLORIDA TIMES-UNION. Hunt Construction VP/Field Operations Sid Perkins said that the project "will be finished on time" by July 15, and "will be ready for the Jaguars' first preseason game in August." Jaguars President Mark Lamping said that the scoreboards "should be ready for use" for EPL club Fulham FC's friendly that is tentatively scheduled for July 26. But Stellino notes the scoreboards "won't be in use" for the U.S. men's national soccer team's June 7 match. New ribbon boards on the sides of the stadium and above the two entrances from the field "are already completed." Hunt also is installing the two 60 feet high and 362 feet long scoreboards in each end zone, making them the "biggest in the world." Workers have already "removed the insides of the old scoreboards," but the outside structure "will remain to help hold up the new scoreboards." This will "save money by not having to totally demolish them" (FLORIDA TIMES-UNION, 4/9).
NEW VIDEOBOARDS IN GLENDALE: NFL Cardinals President Michael Bidwill yesterday announced that Univ. of Phoenix Stadium “will have new videoboards this season.” Bidwill in an e-mail to season-ticket holders wrote that the screens at both the south and north ends “will be improved.” He said this is part of a “collaborative effort” between the team and the Arizona Sports & Tourism Authority. Bidwill in the e-mail also addressed stadium WiFi, “calling enhancements a ‘priority’ and saying there would be more specific information to be shared in the ‘very near future’” (AZCARDINALS.com, 4/8).