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Saturday, September 13, 2008

The Fans Corner#2-The PSL Commentary

The Fans Corner#2-The PSL Commentary
By Willie “The Pizzaman” Mariano for Football Reporters Online

As another opening day approached for my football team. The only football team I have faithfully rooted for since my birth. Check that, since the womb. Whether it be the two and twelve seasons of my youth gone bye. (and there were more of those then I care to remember) or as defending Super Bowl Champions yet again. (The third in my 46 years) I found myself missing something. I had a feeling that I have never experienced in my life. You have to understand one thing folks. My Dad, like almost all Big Blue diehards has had season tickets for years and years. Dear ol' dad since 1954. My brother and myself, since 1976.That is five decades and three decades respectively, and then some that we have bled blue. It was taught to us right along side of always being proud to be an Italian American or a God fearing man who is morally sound and respectful to all of mankind. Like bathing. Like eating. Like drinking water. Like breathing. It was a necessity of life. It was even more important then religion. Only because God did not give Dad his season tickets way back when. No way. God gives to all freely and there was nothing free about being a New York Football Giants season ticket holder. You either renewed your seats every April or May or lost them to the next NYG fan on the list of a hundred thousand strong.
What was also a given of being a season ticket holder, was that you were expected to always be respectful to all fellow fans on football Sundays. This was not a written rule by the Giants organization. It was one ingrained in you by the name on the account who paid the bill season after season. Only then, were you allowed to earn the right to have them passed down to you. Generation after generation. I might be wrong but that sure sounds like ownership to me. Don't get me wrong folks. I totally understand the economics of a now billion dollar industry called the, "National Football League." What I fail to understand is without "us" the fans filling the seats and buying the products endorsed by each and every team, there would be no National Football League. So what do we get for our unwavering loyalty for all these years? Something called, Personal Seat Licenses or "PSL's."
As we all know by now, this is a mandatory one time fee that will allow us to continue being a season ticket holder. To own our seat that we have already owned since forever, in the brand new stadium slated to open in 2010. A stadium that when planned was estimated to cost almost seven hundred million dollars. Then we get, opps we mis-calculated a little. The cost is now 1.4 billion and we the multi millionaire owners of the Giants and Jets can not afford to build it without the help of our faithful fans. What a crock! First of all, who ever was in charge of figuring out the cost of building the new stadium should have been fired on the spot. We are talking double the original estimate. A seven hundred million dollar mistake for a stadium that will not even have a dome? Are they serious?

Evidently they are and we the "fans" are being forced to make up the difference. Not the sponsors, who in one short season will most likely generate enough money to build two stadiums. In closing all I can say with all due respect is that, Mr Wellington Mara is not turning over in his grave, he's doing cartwheels. By meeting him more then a few times and even having the honor to feed him and his wife at my tailgate parties through the years. I can venture to say he would not be to pleased with what his son's and Tish's sons are doing to what he humbly called, "The Greatest and Most Passionate Fans In Sports." I think he would tell them he pays them darn good money to go out and get the sponsors to pay for the new stadium and leave his "friends/fans" alone. Unfortunately this will not happen so we are stuck in the new world of PSL's. "Professional Shylock Licenses!" So in a few short months the money hungry owners of NFL teams have succeeded in making my "Passion Suddenly Lost" for what was always regarded in my family as a given right. You either bleed blue or your an outcast. What a travesty!

NFLPA Needs Assistance for Successor to the late Gene Upshaw

NFLPA Needs Assistance for Successor to the late Gene Upshaw

September 11, 2008

By Slavica Milosevska for Football Reporters Online
The NFL Players' Association have some big shoes to fill after executive director Gene Upshaw's death in August and will be hiring a national search firm to help after consulting with all 32 teams. The union's board will take potential firms into consideration in the few weeks to come. Additionally, the actual NFL players are being questioned on the qualifications of the ideal successor.
NFLPA 's Interim executive director is uncertain regarding the time it will take to find Upshaw's replacement. “The choice of an executive director would not change the players’ bargaining agenda,” he stated. Berthelsen says that the executive board and himself are working with hiring procedures should not affect labor issues and that they are also discussing terms with the NFL.
When asked about taking Upshaw's old position, Berthelsen says he doesn't want that commitment. There are many headaches at this level. For instance, before Upshaw's passing, he had a concern that if the NFL opted out of the CBA that it would never return. This is the current status, making 2010 an uncapped season if no new agreement is settled. There is yet time until the spring of 2009 to make a deal. Only time will tell who and what will happen.

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