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Archive for Saturday, February 10, 2007

Businesses oppose game in writing

Group sends statement to KU that objects to moving MU showdown to Arrowhead

February 10, 2007

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In case there was any doubt, the Lawrence Chamber of Commerce has made it clear that the city's business community is upset about a decision to move this season's Kansas University football game against Missouri to Kansas City's Arrowhead Stadium.

Lavern Squier, president and CEO of the chamber, said Friday that the group's board of directors had approved a statement opposing the move.

"I think there is a resignation that the decision already has been made," Squier said. "But I believe there is some hope that we can minimize the impact or at least not repeat this again."

KU leaders - who met with the chamber board earlier this week - said they appreciated the feedback. But Jim Marchiony, associate athletic director, stopped short of saying that KU wouldn't consider moving games in the future.

"Ninety-eight percent of the time, the university and the city will agree on what the best course of action is on any given subject," Marchiony said. "But there will be times we disagree, and this is one of them. What we'll do now is work together to try to make this the best situation it can be for the city."

Squier said the loss of the game is particularly damaging to the Lawrence economy because the contest is scheduled for Thanksgiving weekend, when many game day fans would stay in the city longer to do holiday shopping. Now, they'll be in Kansas City, Mo.

Squier also said it was unfortunate that KU athletic leaders had not begun discussing the issue with the chamber earlier in the process. Squier said the chamber received just a few days notice from KU that the game might be moved. That was despite the fact that community leaders had expressed concern just two years earlier about KU moving its home football game with Oklahoma to Arrowhead.

Marchiony confirmed that community leaders were given about three or four days notice before the announcement that a move was being considered.

"I'm sure we'll have the discussion sooner, if there is a next time," Marchiony said. "There is no guarantee that the decision will go one way or the other after that discussion takes place. I don't want to mislead anybody."

Marchiony also said some of the responsibility rests with community leaders to start discussions with KU.

"The phone works both ways, too," Marchiony said. "Somebody very easily could have called us between the Oklahoma game and now and talked to us about how we can prevent this from happening. I don't think it should be incumbent upon us, necessarily, for ensuring the conversation gets started."

KU will receive at least $1 million per year for the next two years as part of the deal to hold the 2007 and 2008 KU/MU games at Arrowhead.

The chamber letter comes after the City Commission in late January agreed to send a letter to the athletic department opposing the move. That letter hasn't been sent. Mayor Mike Amyx said that he plans to have a draft of the letter on the commission's agenda Tuesday night for approval.

Comments

monkeyhawk 7 years, 6 months ago

I can envision the headline:

"City gives downtown $1,000,000 for advertising blitz to bring fans back to Lawrence after the big game."

KU does not exist at the pleasure of the chamber or the cc. It is, in fact, the other way around. Some should be happy that they are able to survive from what business KU brings them. It's a shame that losing one 3 hour sporting event would have such a major affect on the economy of the city. What's wrong with that picture?

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moveforward 7 years, 6 months ago

Lew Perkins and Carl Peterson... are dual "Corleone" wannabees!

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skinny 7 years, 6 months ago

I can not believe the city businesses. KU has even given them an extra game this coming year and they still complain.

Normally there are only 5 home football games. The last couple years there have been 6 home football games and the next two years there will be 7. How does the city business figure they are loosing on this deal?

This is a win win deal for KU and Missouri, stop whining!

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Dorothy Hoyt-Reed 7 years, 6 months ago

The University of Kansas is in Lawrence, not Kansas City. Someone needs to remind Lew Perkins of that as they give him his walking papers. KU wouldn't need the money from ticket sales, if they didn't pay Perkins such an outrageous salary.

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SAHM2tylrnathan 7 years, 6 months ago

How about a little creative thinking here? Line up some motorcoach party bus thingies, have a pre-game party in downtown Lawrence, give everybody a safe, entertaining ride to the game, them bus 'em all right back to downtown to celebrate afterward. Less cars on the road, and we get to deprive KCMO of parking fees! Offer up a family bus so little Jaybirds won't have to be exposed to foul language and puke on the way home.

Or figure out how to have a downtown-sponsored tailgate party at Arrowhead with local food, local vendors, etc. Maybe they won't allow it, but has anybody even given it a thought? There is a LOT of lead time here.

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dthroat 7 years, 6 months ago

sas - While I totally agree with your concept, there is a problem with this particular issue.

NOT ONLY are the businesses losing money from the out of towners, they are losing the local base also for that day. You know the "faithful" and the season ticket holders will still go to the game. Most will make it an all day event and many will probably make a week end of it. Instead of eating, buying groceries for tailgates, etc. here, that money will be in KCMO.

Not only do I dislike this from the business sense, but as a ticket holder, I dislike it from a fan perspective. I would much rather have the game here and be able to enjoy it at home.

And for the ones who stated about there being one more home game this year anyway I have two thoughts. Do you seriously think this is an extra game KU scheduled??? This is just the way the scheduling worked out, - has happened in the past and will againg in the future. The second point is look at the other "home game" we get. I don't think playing The Sisters of the Seven Seas will get near the crowd or the excitment of the Missouri game.

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Richard Heckler 7 years, 6 months ago

Lawrence residents do a lot for KU and we deserve all the revenue we can get....it's not a one sided deal. The more tax revenue Lawrence can gather the better. Any so so called extra games also benefit KU athletic department so let's play all home games at the University in order that KU, our small business district and Lawrence taxpayers reap the benefits.

Nothing like a bit of school spirit after all.

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Larry Bauerle 7 years, 6 months ago

If this change works as is hoped, increasing both financial rewards and attention to the KU football program, then the community will reap the benefits of an improved program that will continue to draw even more fans in the future. The money can also be used for other athletic programs, which can then possibly become more competitive and create a larger fan base. Whether you like it or not, University athletics comes down to money and Lew Perkins' job is to find as much as he can.

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Janet Lowther 7 years, 6 months ago

Send 'em ALL to Arrowhead. Trying to get anything done on a game day is a MAJOR PAIN.

Fans don't seem to realize that there are people who just can not fathom their excitement at watching someone else play a stupid game.

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caveatguy 7 years, 6 months ago

sasquatch sez: "Perkins does not work for Lawrence, he works for KU."

People here keep forgetting that Perkins works for HEMENWAY.

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LiberalDude 7 years, 6 months ago

I like the move. It will be neat to see KU play MU in Arrowhead and we already have 6 games in Lawrence. Like others have said, quit whinning Lawrence businesses!

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Fred Whitehead Jr. 7 years, 6 months ago

Something seems to be very lost here. College football is a hame-away entertainment. Few if any of the student athletes will "go pro" in football or other sports. It is for the entertainment of the students and their supporters. Many of the supporters of KU are, guess what!! IN LAWRENCE. But today, things have changed. The influence of the professional leagues, the Hollywood influance on our culture (did anyone see the garish and mind-numbing half-time at the "Superbowl"??) Used to be the college bands worked all week for a half-time show, but now all we get is beer commercials and talking idiots who used to toss a ball around. Now, the fans are forgotten, the university knows they will come like sheep to the game if it was in Austrailia. So who's really to blame? Well if Mr. Perkins arrives at the Kansas City stadium and only 300 die hard fans are there, well, what do you think he migh do next? So there is your solution. It is not rocket science. He sells his soul to the highest bidder. So do not fall into the trap. Turn in your season tickets, I am sure you can find a more beneficial use for the money and time. Stay home, you can certainly find something better to do than fawn to this horrid mess that the money grubbing barons have made of what used to be a fun college event. Just say NO to them.

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kujayhawk 7 years, 6 months ago

Not only are they moving it out of Lawrence, it's going to Missouri.

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compmd 7 years, 6 months ago

dthroat, frwent, very insightful posts. its a shame there are others who don't "get it." the university has been ignorant of the city and county and is quickly becoming the local bully. and what do we do as citizens? we quietly hand the bully our lunch money and wait for the inevitable wedgie and flushie.

its painfully obvious that there are people here who do not own, run, or are instrumental in the operation of small local businesses. clearly. they don't mind the university tactics or can't even see them. they can be identified here by their oblivious statements regarding the complaints of businesses.

to think that marchiony tried laying blame on the chamber of commerce! he must be on some of the hallucinogens that he's putting in the water so people think what he's doing is right.

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Bone777 7 years, 6 months ago

What a bunch of boners!

KU is not an island. KU is Lawrence and Lawrence is KU. Sure the funding sources are different, but you can't separate the two.

Lew is doing what he was hired for, to make $$$.

I think Lew's job sucks and I would like to see amatuer athletics remain affordable and pure.

If this keeps up, I say start paying the players and call it 'SEMI - PRO'.

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getserious 7 years, 6 months ago

When people say, "you still have 6 home games, quit whining" I say, "if it's so great of an idea to play in Arrowhead, why not play the Toledo game there and keep the Mizzou game here" Local businesses, who go above and beyond when it comes to supporting the university, make more money when Big 12 schools come to town. Do you really think that SE Louisana will bring as many fans to Lawrence as Mizzou? Then maybe now you see the problem. Also, I would like to know the breakdown on the lost tax revenue the city loses by playing the game in Mo. City gets no taxes, Lew Perkins gets a million. hmmmm. Just as its not the University's responsibility to make the city happy, the city in turn is not required to provide, fire, water, sewer, power, police....to the city. One hand washes the other. Thanks Lew for screwing this up.

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budwhysir 7 years, 6 months ago

Have the businesses promised the athletics dept an amount higher than one million dollars for this game??? Its not about the money the businesses make its about the athletic dept on this one.

Lots to disagree about so little time. I say all the businesses should just close down during the game. Problem solved right? I mean what they are saying is they cant do business on that day if the game isnt here. I am sure that they dont blame the university when sales arent good on a non game day

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getserious 7 years, 6 months ago

slight typo, I should have said it's not the city's responsibility to provide those services to the "university" not city. Sorry.

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getserious 7 years, 6 months ago

also, if it's all about the money budwhyser, then why not play all football games at Arrowhead, bigger seating capacity. Also, why not play all Basketball games in the new Sprint Center, more seating, they would still sell out, meaning more money for the University. According to your logic, that's what we should do.

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budwhysir 7 years, 6 months ago

Well, the draw back is this, they wouldnt sell out cause after the state raises the toll on the turnpike, more people will be like me and not go to the games.

So all in all the university is going to make the fans and the business owners mad. Although, I dont think the business owners have anything to complain about. It isnt up to the university to make sure they make money. As for the tax revenue, I pay enough taxes already

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budwhysir 7 years, 6 months ago

GO KC

OOOPS, I mean GO KU

Here is a college level algebra problem for everyone,

KU + KC =

BIG ATHLETIC MONEY

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