The NFL’s rules for building a stadium are simple:
- City/municipality must have skin (money) in the game
- Minimum capacity of 63-65,000, with potential expansion to 70,000+
- NFL will provide up to $200 million for per team/stadium if new construction
- If successful, NFL will award a Super Bowl at a future date
At the NFL owners meetings today, the 49ers were notified that they are one step closer to that last bit. According to Sports Business Journal’s Daniel Kaplan, San Francisco/Santa Clara is a finalist for Super Bowl L (2016) along with Miami. The city that loses out on L becomes a finalist for LI (2017), competing with Houston.
The Super Bowl is an award from the league for getting a stadium deal. It’s no small reward, as numerous cities would kill for the opportunity to bring in hundreds of millions in economic impact to a region. The actual amount of economic impact is up for considerable debate, but no one can doubt the amount of media coverage, blocks of hotel rooms booked solid, and plain spending from visitors that occurs with each big game. Last February we discussed what hosting a Super Bowl in San Francisco would be like and what it would entail. It’s worth a read if you’re interested.
Miami is the competitor for L, and despite its 10-time history of hosting the game, is at a distinct disadvantage. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has warned the Dolphins and Miami that if the region wanted to continue hosting the game, improvements such as a roof would be required. For now, all the NFL is looking for are some improvements to sightlines, lighting and sound, and a canopy over some of the stands. If those improvements don’t happen (and they aren’t funded at the moment), it’s easy to see the 49ers and SF/SC winning by virtue of its newer facility and novel location.
Kaplan also had a key Raider-related tweet coming out of the owners meetings.
Oakland raiders owner marc davis began floating to reporters at owners meeting dublin, calif., as potential site for new stadium
— daniel kaplan (@dkaplanSBJ) October 16, 2012
In addition, Davis talked about how outdated the Coliseum is (Shush! Can’t badmouth the Coliseum dude!), while saying that he has little interest in sharing the Santa Clara stadium with the 49ers even though the 49ers deserve great credit for getting the stadium project done. The Coliseum remains the default option simply because the land and location are already prime, but as Davis continues to talk up Dublin’s Camp Parks site, one has to wonder what Davis really wants. Is he looking to pit two East Bay cities against each other, the way his dad had done in the past? Davis has to be looking to minimize the team’s exposure. Yet it’s hard to see how the Raiders could put together as richly-backed a deal as the 49ers for a new stadium. It sure seems as though the Raiders will be sticking at the Coliseum until the best deal possible falls into Davis’s lap.