Real NFL and NCAA Spin from LA



59273762By Jaboner Jackson | Last week, we delved into the return of the NFL to Los Angeles by posting our Final Stack Rankings of Teams Headed to Farmers Field.  We explored how the San Diego Chargers are headed to Los Angeles for the 2012-13 season and how they would play in the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum until Farmers Field construction is finished in 2016.  We looked at the brain trust behind AEG and how and how the Environmental Impact Report is the only remaining obstacle .  Our work on the NFL in LA is definitive.  I tie up some loose ends today before focusing on the upcoming NFL 2011-12 season.  I enlisted the help of Reader SD4Life to start me off.

Still think it’s the Chargers [headed to Los Angeles after Mark Fabiani refuted the Stack Rankings]? And still think Spanos sells the team? SD4life.

Yes and yes.  To be blunt: we nailed this.

I just have a hard time seeing Spanos selling.  Why did he go [through] all those labor negotiations if he wants to sell? SD4Life

I don’t know the reason why the Spanos family would be interested in selling.  I only know what my research and analysis of AEG’s situation demonstrates. I have every reason to believe that AEG is looking for majority control of its anchor tenant and that the tenant will be the Chargers.

Has AEG shifted its plan to only wanting controlling interest of a team? Or will they settle for a minority stake? SD4Life

I am more convinced than ever that AEG has always wanted majority control.  Even though the Memorandum of Understanding with the City of Los Angeles details the likelihood that AEG will have only minority interest in an NFL team, I believe otherwise.  AEG has always had operational control of its products, from the Staples Center to The Home Depot Center to the Los Angeles Kings.  Financially, it makes little sense for AEG to build a $1.2 billion NFL stadium and not control the anchor tenant.

Furthermore, people who know Tim Leiweke understand that he does not have the personality of someone willing to cede operational control.  Leiweke has created success with AEG by controlling all aspects of its products.  To cede operational control of its anchor tenant for Farmers Field would be inconsistent with the organizational philosophy of AEG.  And again, our financial analysis makes Farmers Field a middling investment without operational control of the anchor tenant, particularly since Farmers Field will not be online until 2016 and the first few seasons in Los Angeles will have to be played at the Coliseum, which will generative even less local revenue for the Chargers than Qualcomm Stadium does currently.

Over the past 18 months, Leiweke has been able to procure the Mayor’s endorsement, bring every one of the Los Angeles Council Members to his side, make the Los Angeles Coliseum Commission irrelevant, and exert his control over the State Legislature.  This is not a man who sees AEG as a minority owner of an NFL team.  As one investment banker who had one too many drinks at the JW Marriott last week said to me,  “Tim wants to take this whole f***ing thing over.”

I am slowly but surely developing a healthy man crush on hunky Tim Leiweke.  If only hunky Tim could play quarterback.


AEG continues to push ahead with its political friends in high places to approve legislation at the State level to provide ‘protection’ for litigation related to the 10,000+ page Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for Farmers Field that AEG will submit to the City of Los Angeles by years’ end.  Assembly speaker John Perez and State Senator Alex Padilla introduced SB 292 on Friday to limit the total length of litigation relating to the EIR to 175 days (or 205 days in the case of an appeal).


DAY 30

DAY 70

DAY 95

DAY 115

DAY 175

DAY 205*

City of Los Angeles' Notice of Determination on EIR



Challenge Petition to EIR must be filed

AEG and Petitioner must submit Opening Briefs

AEG's Reply Brief due

Petitioner's Reply Brief Due





Court must decide the case





*If needed only, California Supreme Court must decide Appeal

SB 292 also establishes Early Mediation whereby litigation can be bypassed completely.  If the Petitioner and AEG agree on mitigation during mediation, the resulting measure will be required to be implemented and litigation cannot be pursued.

In exchange for these considerations, AEG promises to achieve a “trip ratio” that is 10% lower than any other NFL stadium, a feat that the FOOTBALLPHDS except to be easily achievable considering the proximity of the stadium to Metro transit lines and its walkability for downtown Los Angeles residents.  AEG will also guarantee a “carbon neutral” environmental footprint

The State Legislature will break on Friday, September 9, which means the Legislature has 4 working days to vote on the bill.  If the State Legislature does not vote on the bill, they can be called back into a special session to do so.

If the Legislature does not pass SB 292, groundbreaking on Farmers Field will not happen by June 2012.  Groundbreaking will be delayed a year while AEG tries again to get litigation protection from CEQA.

Interested in getting geeky with the details of SB 292?  Check it out here.


One of the stranger comments I saw this week asked why there was no advertising on FOOTBALLPHDS.  The answer has always been obvious to our regular Wonderful Readers—we don’t want nor need advertising.  We have continually refused to allow advertising on our site so that we can say what we need to say when we need to say it.  Thankfully, we have been fortunate in having financial success in our past lives.  We write because we love football and Los Angeles.  Our Wonderful Readers can rest assured that we have no outside influences and that every prediction, analysis, and man crush is expressly our own.  The day that we accept advertising is the day that Rock Mayock has made one too many aggressive bets with a nation’s sovereign debt and the FOOTBALLPHDS will have bigger issues to worry about than football.  We will continue to bring you Real NFL and NCAA Spin from Los Angeles without selling out to Madison Avenue.  We are Angelenos and do this site our way 100% of the time.


The FOOTBALLPHDS will keep on eye on developments with the NFL in LA but we now consider our work on the topic complete.  We long ago said that Farmers Field was a done deal at the City level and sure enough it is.  And now that we have the Chargers slotted to become the anchor tenant for Farmers Field, we consider the biggest piece of the puzzle solved.

I want to thank SD4Life for keeping us on our toes and allowing us to disseminate his questions to the rest of our Wonderful Readers.

Did I miss anything? Email me and I’ll put together an NFL in LA update in a couple of weeks or so.

Comments (6) Trackbacks (0)
  1. Because Roski got the exemption for their stadium in Industry, AEG will get theirs for LA as well. Only need a 51% vote to pass the bill.

  2. Minority share of two teams: Chargers and Rams? is that possible?

    What about Bills? Jaguars?

  3. I do think that the Bills are a likely team. If AEG wants majority control, the only way to do that is via the Bills. The Chargers have said they aren’t selling a majority control. Ever.

    No matter what is happening with what team, it seems like AEG already has someone set to play in Farmers Field. Why go through the insane trouble they’re going through if it’s all a pipedream and nothing is set in stone? I bet you that AEG has someone, be it the Rams or Bills or Chargers, already signed on the dotted line.

  4. Charges to la blah blah blah chargers to la blah blah blah. Doesn’t Farmers Field know this is not Chargers territory and never will be? Go with history, go with Raiders.

  5. Sorry, but AEG has spent more than a decade getting Raider Fan type people out of downtown. Why would they want to bring them back? That’s right, they don’t. Unless they want the Bryan Stow incident to become a weekly thing, and that’s just bad pub.

    • It’s called tradition, history, fan base. How much of a fan base do the Chargers have? And the Chargers have just as much trouble at their stadium as anyone else.

      If Farmers Field is smart, they’ll bring back the Silver and Black.

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