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Jags owner: stadium tarps are like underachieving

Posted on: February 23, 2012 11:45 am
Edited on: February 23, 2012 12:32 pm
 
Shahid Khan 'absolutely' wants to get rid of those tarps that cover seats in EverBank Field. (Getty Images)

By Ryan Wilson

Just in case the five wins in 2011 or the .500-or-worse records dating back to 2008 didn't make it obvious enough, new Jaguars owner Shahid Khan would like to add another item to the list of "sure signs your franchise is a failure." Those infernal tarps that cover seats in the upper deck of EverBank Field.

Officially, the stadium has 76,867 seats but the tarps cover some 10,000 seats. But the notion that fans don't support the hometown team is inaccurate. It's just that the stadium is too big for the NFL market. (And this isn't a slap at Jacksonville; Pittsburgh's Heinz Field holds fewer than 70,000, as does Indy's Lucas Oil Stadium.)

The Florida Times-Union's Tania Ganguli wrote about this Wednesday.

"The tarps aren't as shameful as they're perceived to be nationally. They bring the size of the stadium down to an appropriate size for the market, and it still seats more than the stadiums of NFL teams in bigger markets, including the Chicago Bears."

As PFT notes, EverBank Stadium has to be expanded to more than 80,000 for the Georgia-Florida game because the NFL isn't as popular as college football in Florida. Khan hopes to change that and it starts with those tarps.

"Absolutely," Khan told Sports Business Journal's Daniel Kaplan when asked if he hoped to do away with the tarps altogether. "To me, every day I look at the tarps it is like underachieving, and I can’t wait to be able to do that."

Khan was also asked about new marketing and sales initiatives.

The new owner with the new head coach. (US PRESSWIRE)
"Some of the upper bowl, we have reduced prices," he said. "One of the strategic issues with the Jaguars is it is a young team. We don’t have the second-, third-, fourth-generation fans. 'I went to a game with my grandfather, and we walked through two feet of snow,' — and things like that. You don’t have any of those connections. This year … if you bring a child to the game, those tickets are half price. In certain sections we are doing that … to really develop the next generation. "

Part of that includes expanding the Jaguars brand beyond the United States.

"London: There is an ex-pat population; they understand the sport and [have] an interest. Canada would be another one. Germany is another one. People don’t realize how many football fans, NFL fans, are in Germany. Spain is another one; Barcelona is a very sports-centric city. … Especially for teams like Jacksonville, it provides a showcase."

Ultimately, popularity comes down to one thing: winning. That's something the Jags haven't done since 2007, which was also the only time the franchise won a playoff game during Jack Del Rio's eight-plus years as head coach. Now that chore falls to new head coach Mike Mularkey and second-year quarterback Blaine Gabbert.

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Comments

Since: Oct 30, 2007
Posted on: February 24, 2012 12:22 pm
 

Jags owner: stadium tarps are like underachieving

I want to call Shahid Khan Ron Jeremy but I think Ron would not like the confusion this would cause.

And by the way, YES! There are very very very rich non-Americans far richer than you or I owning a lot of things, red necks. Get used to it and stop being racist.



Since: Sep 1, 2006
Posted on: February 24, 2012 9:53 am
 

Jags owner: stadium tarps are like underachieving

Silence! Infidels!



Since: Jan 19, 2008
Posted on: February 24, 2012 12:40 am
 

Jags owner: stadium tarps are like underachieving

IRAN NUMBER 1; USSR NUMBER 1; JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS NUMBER 1; USA...HACK PTOOH!!



Since: Dec 4, 2011
Posted on: February 23, 2012 8:06 pm
 

Jags owner: stadium tarps are like underachieving

Well, Mr. Khan, maybe you should think of improving results on the field first before assuming that people will want to seat where the tarps are today.



Since: Sep 5, 2009
Posted on: February 23, 2012 2:16 pm
 

Jags owner: stadium tarps are like underachieving

     Another goof who thinks the NFL should be in Europe.  If you bring a child to a game in one of those sections, I hope the Jags have a couple of big screens or you have binoculars because that is about the best view you'll get.  This guy who thinks those crappy seats will sell needs to put a playoff contender out there first.



Since: Sep 25, 2006
Posted on: February 23, 2012 1:13 pm
 

Jags owner: stadium tarps are like underachieving

Khan has been overwhelming in his approach to the Jaguars.  He's got an open checkbook and is working on improving the brand.  It's impressive to see and it won't happen overnight.  If he is successful in creating the international image for the Jaguars it could really help the league as a whole.  Not a bad idea to expand the borders.  Jacksonville has been labeled (more than once) as the least liked franchise in the league.  It sounds like ownership is going to use all avenues of marketing the product to enhance the brand.



Since: Dec 22, 2011
Posted on: February 23, 2012 1:09 pm
 

Jags owner: stadium tarps are like underachieving

And if the Bears had Jacksonvilles stadium, it would be filled to 100% capacity! Bears games are sold out EVERY game. They have a waiting list for season tickets. Bears owners are not too bright when it comes to the size of the stadium. Your trying to say they outdraw the Bears but its very misleading. By the way, the attendence differnce is 186 people. Soldier field holds roughly about 20,000 or more less than Jacksonville. You cant compare Jacksonville's attendance with Chicago's.



Since: Aug 18, 2010
Posted on: February 23, 2012 12:47 pm
 

Jags owner: stadium tarps are like underachieving

If the stadium in Jacksonville was as small as the one in Chicago, Jacksonville would be at over 100% of capacity.  The Jags actually outdrew the Bears in home attendance, even with the seats covered.  While the Jags attendance is not good, they still outdraw seven other NFL teams.  Nothing to be proud of, but better than some that rarely get talked about when it comes to attendance. 



Since: Dec 21, 2006
Posted on: February 23, 2012 12:38 pm
 

Jags owner: stadium tarps are like underachieving

wwe wrestling will be their halftime entertainment!!!



Since: Jan 19, 2008
Posted on: February 23, 2012 12:22 pm
 

Jags owner: stadium tarps are like underachieving

When did the Iron Sheik buy the Jaguars???


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