Conflict Of Interest

Surely you know by now that Josh McDaniels backed out of whatever verbal commitment he made to the Indy Colts and will not be the Colts’ head coach next year.  The coverage of this kerfuffle has focused on potential back-room shenanigans by the Pats’ ownership and promises to McDaniels that may or may not have been made and all that sort of speculation.  Also, reported is that McDaniels’ agent has fired McDaniels taking the position in effect that he does not want to represent someone who would back out of a deal that the agent had negotiated.  How noble a gesture…

How-Evah …!  [/Stephen A. Smith] Several reports said that the agent involved here represented Josh McDaniels AND he represented Chris Ballard – the GM of the Colts who was negotiating the team’s side of the contract with McDaniels.  That means the agent represented the two principals on opposite sides of the deal.

  • Can you tell me in what segment of the known universe that situation is not called a Conflict of Interest?
  • I have no idea if the agent involved here is an attorney, but I strongly suspect that the Legal Canon of Ethics would preclude an attorney from representing the parties on either side of a dispute.  Plaintiff’s attorneys do not also represent defendants in civil actions against one another; I suspect that is not an accident.

About a week ago, the Browns hired Todd Haley to be their offensive coordinator.  Haley held that job with the Steelers for the last 5 years.  Last year, the Browns scored only 234 points in their 16 games (just under 15 points per game); that was the lowest points production in the league.  Moreover, the Browns have gone 1-31 in their last 32 NFL games.  I guess you would have to say that Haley has found a job situation where there is only an upside.

The Carolina Panthers’ franchise is now officially up for sale; Jerry Richardson said that would be the case once the season was over and the team has hired legal and financial advisors to effect the transaction.  Interestingly, the NFL felt it necessary to “let it be known” (by including the topic in the Commissioner’s State of the League speech just before the Super Bowl) that the league strongly preferred keeping the team in Charlotte NC.  I found that interesting because with the recent franchise shufflings in the NFL, the LA market and the Las Vegas market are now occupied, and I wonder where a new Panthers’ owner might think to move the franchise.  Consider:

  • Charlotte is the 22nd largest TV market in the US according to Nielsen.
  • Only 3 larger markets do not already have NFL teams.  They are St. Louis, Sacramento-Stockton and Orlando.  St. Louis is an unlikely option; Sacramento is a sports backwater; and, putting a 4th franchise in Florida would be truly stupid.
  • Unoccupied markets similar in size to Charlotte include Raleigh-Durham (is it worth the trouble to move there?), Portland (maybe if Phil Knight was going to make an offer?), Hartford (doubt it), San Antonio (Jerry Jones’ head would explode) and Columbus (good luck competing with Ohio State there).

My guess is that the NFL simply was laying down a marker with that tidbit informing any potential bidder that he/she had best not be thinking of asking to move the franchise any time soon.  The most recent value put on the Panthers’ franchise that I can find was by Forbes about 6 months ago; they had the Panthers worth $2.1B.  Just for fun, I will set an OVER/UNDER line on the final price here:

  • $2.5B – – You want OVER or UNDER?

Now that folks have digested the fact that the Eagles are the Super Bowl champions, it may be interesting to look at the financial draw that the game had on TV.  Reports say that NBC hauled in $414M in ad revenue for the game.  That does NOT include the ad revenue generated by the 6-hour pregame hootenanny.  Last year’s game brought in $419M but recall that last year’s game was an overtime game and therefore had more ad slots.  This year’s ad revenue was a Super Bowl record for a 60-minute game.  The estimate for the total revenue to include the pregame and post-game ads is north of $500M.  Not a bad day…

In case you did not keep track, there were 49-and-a-half minutes of advertisements during the game.  That means ads took up about 22% of the time from the kickoff to the launching of the confetti.  Anheuser-Busch and Fiat-Chrysler were the biggest ad buyers this year; each of them aired 4 minutes worth of commercials.

Brad Dickson had the comment about Super Bowl viewers in the Omaha World-Herald:

“Most everybody will be watching the Super Bowl. Except for ESPN executives, who plan to skip the game to rewatch some old LaVar Ball interviews.”

One more Super Bowl related “bit of tid” if you will:

  • With the Eagles’ win over the Patriots last Sunday, the NFC East is the only division in the NFL in which all the teams have won a Super Bowl title.
  • At the other end of that spectrum is the AFC South where only the Colts have won a Super Bowl and none of the other 3 teams have.

Finally, here are two comments from Greg Cote of the Miami Herald about marathon runners:

“Miami Marathon happened while you slept: More than 20,000 runners were expected Sunday for the annual Miami Marathon & Half Marathon, which began at the ungodly hour of 5:45 a.m. Once again I meant to compete, but an utter lack of interest and ambition got in the way.”

And …

“Former Marlins president David Samson is running seven marathons on seven continents in seven days beginning Tuesday in a continuing effort to get as far from Jeffrey Loria as he possibly can.”

But don’t get me wrong, I love sports………