January 29, 2008
As I'm walking in to work today, I get to see this article on the front page of the D&C.
While the City of Rochester and Monroe County have proven unable to run similiar facilities without incurring huge loses (Frontier Field, Blue Cross Arena, and the ESL Centre ring any bells?), I'm starting to wonder if the City of Rochester could possibly do any worse than the current Rhinos ownership has to date.
$11 million in debt is concerning given the fact that NY State has poured $19 million into the project already. There is a laundry list of reasons of why the debt is this high. And while some of the reasons were out of the Rhinos control (like David Gantt pushing to build the stadium in a poor location), the Rhinos did have the option of pulling the plug on the project and staying at Frontier Field.
And while I love the sightlines at PAETEC Park, I think it's easy to assume that the financial state of the Rhinos would be a whole lot better if PAETEC Park had stayed a dream.
Moving forward, it's going to be interesting to see how this all plays out.
Will the Rhinos go bankrupt?
If they do, will that skuttle the 2008 season? Or, will it make it more likely that the Rhinos will play in 2008?
Will going bankrupt help or hurt the club's attempts to add Dan Williams as the white knight investor?
Is it a good idea for the taxpayers if the City takes control of PAETEC Park? Or, has the City proven that they can not operate venues without having to pour millions each year into the facilities, thus make it a losing proposition for local tax payers?
Is there any way to get Steve Donner and Frank DuRoss out of the mix as far as running the team given how bad things have gotten?
I wish I had more answers. But, all I can do today is buy some MegaMillions tickets and hope that I win so that I might be able to buy the team.............
News & Notes:
- One interesting tidbit came out in the official announcement of Marcelo Gallardo signing with DC United : He counts as a DP.
- If these pictures of the USMNT's red and blue practice jerseys and red practice pullovers are hints as to what the new USMNT jerseys will look like, I'm scared. They remind me of the 2007 adidas jerseys that teams like the Houston Dynamo wore that I never liked much.
- The Carolina RailHawks will be facing the Red Bulls on March 28th. It must be nice to have your team announcing games versus MLS clubs as opposed to considering bankruptcy.
- SBI.net is reporting that Aston Villa may be trumping Celtic's offer for Chivas USA goalkeeper Brad Guzan. It has to be because Lerner is a Yank!
- Bruce Arena and Francisco Marcos are amongst the people on the 2008 Builders Ballot for the National Soccer Hall of Fame.
- It looks like NJ Ironmen head coach Omid Namazi won't be joining the Red Bulls after all. I wonder if Chris Economides is breathing a sigh of relief?
- Scott Palguta gets a special mention amongst the Red Bulls minicamp invitees at Big Apple Soccer.com!
- Steven Goff has a boatload of stuff in his Soccer Insider blog lately. My favorite tidbit is that 5'4" DC United forward Franco Niell will wear #34. That's a big number for such a little guy!
- The Houston Chronicle has an article on how keeping tickets affordable has been a key piece to the Dynamo's success in their new home.
- Here is an interesting article on MLS selling jersey sponsorships. Honestly, I don't see the big deal with regards to the "defacing" of a jersey.
- Maybe Philly isn't the leader with regards to landing the 16th MLS franchise........... Who am I kidding, San Jose and Seattle have gotten teams without solid plans for a soccer stadium, right?
- And in closing, I want to give a shout out to Justin Swackhamer who is leaving the Rhinos and moving to Colorado. He's been a big help in lining up guests for Kick This! and with getting me info for this blog. Good luck, Justin!
The views and opinions expressed in this column are those of the author, and not necessarily those of the Rochester Rhinos or SoccerSam.com. Feel free to send any comments or complaints to firstname.lastname@example.org. James promises to read (but not to respond) to all of them.