The Jeffersonian: Politicks, Sports, and Culture

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

One More Saints Post

Unless something major happens, this will likely be my last post on this issue for the rest of the year. This issue has gotten alot of people talking. Which is good. It does seem though as if alot of bad points are being brought up.

Carlos Guerra
talks about morality in the Saints possible move from New Orleans to San Antonio. But morality was the last thing on the mind of New Orleans when there was a possibility of the Spurs moving there in the late '90s, or when they successfully wooed the Hornets away from Charlotte after the city failed to give Donald Shinn a new arena. So there does seem to be a double standard at work here.

Does Katrina mitigate these circumstances? I don't know.

There are a few things I do know though. One, from everything that I've read, the Superdome may only be operational for a few games next year. Even if it is though, their practice field in Jefferson parish has been destroyed and, as Ken Rodriguez points out, who's gonna show up?

Two, not only can Baton Rouge not support them, Baton Rouge doesn't want them:

A report in the LSU student newspaper would seem to support Horn's claim about Baton Rouge.

According to the Reveille, LSU chancellor Sean O'Keefe expressed at a faculty senate meeting last week his displeasure about the NFL's decision to schedule games at Tiger Stadium.

"We'd rather not have the games here at all," O'Keefe was quoted as saying by the Reveille. "This is going to be a real problem, and we are not excited about the prospect."

O'Keefe called the staging of the games a "huge logistical nightmare" and said "it will not be a windfall for the university."

Three, contrary to what national talking heads say, Benson will move his team to Los Angeles when hell freezes over.

Finally, as Joe Horn puts it:

"We can all blow smoke and say this and that," Horn said. "But guess what? When it comes down to the ultimate come-down, it's Mr. Benson's team. ... This is not the Green Bay Packers. New Orleans doesn't own the Saints and, right now, New Orleans isn't suitable for us to go back to.*

At the end of the day, this is Tom Benson's team. He's the only one that gains or loses money on this franchise, and to expect Benson to keep his business in New Orleans out of loyalty- when the city of New Orleans has shown no qualms about peeling teams away from other communities- is disingenous at best.

*For those that don't know, the Packers are the only publicly held NFL-franchise (maybe the only publicly held franchise in all of major league sports... I don't know). You could, if you found a shareholder willing to sell that is, buy a share in the team. They even have a massive shareholder's meeting that fills up Lambeau Field. Complete with tailgating and all.