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  • Nashville Kats return for 2005

    NASHVILLE, TENN. - What goes around comes around. The Nashville Kats will return to action in January 2005 at the Gaylord Entertainment Center. The addition of the Kats to the Nashville sports landscape will mean that area football fans have the opportunity to enjoy the sport on a yearlong basis, with the Titans season running from August through January and the Kats from February to June.

    Commissioner Baker on Kats' return

    K.S. “Bud” Adams, Jr., a founding member of the AFL (American Football League) in 1959, and owner of the Titans/Houston Oilers franchise for 45 years came full circle on Aug. 18, 2001, when his application to purchase an AFL (Arena Football League) team for Nashville was accepted.

    “I am thrilled that we were finally able to put an Arena League team on the field for the football fans in the Mid-South,” said K.S. “Bud” Adams, Jr. “One of the things I did when the original Nashville arena team was sold and moved in 2001, was to hire their coach, Pat Sperduto, to work for the Titans until we were able to negotiate a lease with the Gaylord Entertainment Center. Now that things are in place I will hand the head coaching duties of the Kats over to Pat.”

    Pat Sperduto spent three seasons as head coach of the Kats from 1999 - 2001, produced a 32-18 record, three playoff appearances and two ArenaBowl berths. As a player and coach, Sperduto has advanced to the ArenaBowl on five occasions and won three Arena Championships with Tampa Bay.

    In December of 2003, Bob Flynn was hired to be the General Manager of the new arena team and will handle all aspects involved in the administration of a team, including tickets, marketing and promotions. Flynn is a 14-year veteran of the Arena League with stops in Los Angeles and Orlando. During his tenure in Orlando, Flynn was part of an operation that played in four ArenaBowls and winning a championship in 1998.

    The Kats also will have additional stockholders, including the Kats original ownership group (Corner Partnership), led by Mark Bloom.

    Tickets for the games will range from $5 to $99 per game with season ticket packages starting at $45 for the nine-game home season (eight regular season games and one post season game). Starting today, the team will begin taking orders for season tickets either by calling the Kats ticket office at 615-565-4700 (ticket office fax number is 615-565-4212) or by going to titansonline.com and obtaining an on-line order form. A $50 per seat refundable deposit is required to reserve seats. Priority seating will be based on the date that the deposit is received. For former Kats season ticket holders, every effort will be made to locate their seats near their previous seats, but exact placement cannot be guaranteed.

    “Our goal in structuring our ticket prices was to create exciting and affordable entertainment that is accessible to families and young adults,” said Adams.

    The original Kats played in Nashville from 1997 - 2001, amassed a 51-29 record and advanced to two ArenaBowls (2000 and 2001). The Arena League is entering its 19th season of operation in 2005, and the success of the league continues to skyrocket. The league has grown to 20 teams, playing a 16 game regular season schedule with games televised regionally on NBC. Six (Nashville, New Orleans, Dallas, Detroit, Georgia, Colorado) of the 20 teams have NFL ownership ties. Games are played on Friday and Saturday nights and Sunday afternoons.

    Training camp for the Kats will begin January 3, 2005.

    Kats administrative offices can be reached at 615-565-4699, by e-mail at [email protected] or by fax at 615-565-4252.

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  • DJRamFan
    Rush Wins 2004 Afl Commissioner’s Award
    by DJRamFan
    Following its most successful season in franchise history – both on and off the field – the Chicago Rush was recognized with the prestigious Commissioner’s Award, given to the Arena Football League’s organization of the year.

    Voted on by the staff of the AFL’s New York and Chicago offices, the honor rewards excellence in the front office, as well as achievement on the field.

    “Winning the 2004 Commissioner’s Award is a tremendous honor for our organization,” said Mike Polisky, Rush senior vice president and general manager. “It’s a great way of acknowledging the dedicated and passionate efforts of our front office staff, coaches and players.”

    Chicago was the most televised team in the league for the second-consecutive season with 13 games featured on the “AFL on NBC,” including six home games. Spurred on by the team’s “tune in” marketing initiatives, Chicagoland ratings in 2004 increased by nearly 20% versus the team’s 2003 performance.

    The Rush also boasted significant improvement at the box office, as ticket revenues increased by 22%, helping Chicago average more than 14,100 fans per game at Rosemont’s Allstate Arena.

    Corporate sponsorships jumped 42% – and included partnerships with, among others, McDonald’s, Pepsi, LaSalle Bank, Ace Hardware and Anheuser-Busch – while the organization’s integrated advertising campaign and targeted, co-branding promotions boosted brand awareness to an all-time high.

    Chicago also experienced significant growth online, as its newly redesigned Web site, Chicagorush.com, doubled its monthly traffic during 2004 to more than 30,000 unique visitors each month.

    In competition, the Rush ended the regular season with a team-record 11-5 mark and advanced to the ArenaBowl semifinals before being defeated by eventual league champion San Jose. It was Chicago’s fourth-consecutive playoff berth in as many seasons, and second semifinal appearance in the last three years.

    Reservations for season tickets for Chicago’s fifth-anniversary season in 2005 currently are being accepted. In honor of Chicago’s fifth anniversary, the Rush is offering fans the opportunity to reserve their 2005 season tickets for just $5 per seat. To reserve your tickets, or to find out more information, call (877) RUSH-TIX.
    -06-30-2004, 11:12 AM
  • DJRamFan
    Arena League's Kats to play in GEC next year
    by DJRamFan
    By PAUL KUHARSKY
    Staff Writer

    A resurrected version of the Arena Football League's Nashville Kats will begin play at Gaylord Entertainment Center in February.

    Titans owner Bud Adams, a founding owner in the old American Football League, beamed yesterday at the concept that he is now an owner in the new AFL.

    ''What goes around comes around,'' he said with a giggle. ''I think it will be great for Tennessee and Nashville to have football most of the year round.''

    AFL Commissioner David Baker said he was ''tremendously heartened'' by Adams' commitment to the league, going so far as to call the new franchise a ''second Music City Miracle.''

    Adams' representatives and officials from the GEC have been haggling over a lease since the AFL accepted Adams' bid for a Nashville franchise in August 2001. They finally settled on a one-year lease with two three-year options. The Kats will pay $3,500 per game and cover all the expenses of operating the facility.

    They will get back 30 percent of the concessions and be able to sell signage on the dasher-boards providing those sponsors do not conflict with the GECs' regular advertising. Adams said the Kats will be able to sell only five of the building's suites for their games.

    With a National Hockey League lockout that could extend into 2005 looming, the arena guaranteed itself at least eight games that will all be played on Friday or Saturday nights or Sunday afternoons. Adams said AFL games at the GEC will ''help the city out.''

    The original Kats joined the AFL as an expansion team in 1997, but original owner Mark Bloom sold the team in 2001, it moved to Atlanta and became the Georgia Force.

    Bloom is back, this time as a minority owner, and so is Coach Pat Sperduto. Adams hired Sperduto in in 2001 and he has worked in the Titans' offices as director of arena football operations ever since.

    Sperduto said he will continue to work with offensive line coach Mike Munchak throughout Titans training camp, then gradually disconnect from the NFL team.

    Bob Flynn, who has 14 years of AFL experience, is the team's general manager. He said his primary role will be building a base of ticket buyers.

    Details of the team's expansion draft and the league schedule will be sorted out at an AFL meeting Aug. 17. AFL teams have 24-man rosters, and each team protected 16 players in the last expansion draft.

    The Kats will also be able to build by signing free agents. Sperduto said some familiar names could be Kats again when training camp opens in January.

    While there could be some overlap between administrative departments of the Titans and Kats, Adams said he will add staff to his AFL team as Sperduto and Flynn determine what they need.

    Paul Kuharsky is a staff writer for The Tennessean. He can be reached at...
    -08-03-2004, 11:18 AM
  • AlphaRam
    Tulsa Talons Leaving AFL2
    by AlphaRam
    I got this from the Talons today:

    Dear Season Ticket Holder:


    "After a great decade in af2 which saw the Talons post the most wins in league history, the Talons have elected to join a new league called Arena Football 1-Major League Arena Football is Here!! With the AFL going dark, this new league will be the premier arena football league in the country, and as season ticket holders you will now have an opportunity to see the best arena football players in the country.

    The Talons are pleased to announce season ticket prices will remain the same for the 2010 season. Attached you will find a seating chart and a renewal form to be filled out and returned to the Talons’ office to reserve your seats for the 2010 season. You can do this by mailing the form with the deposit to 6221 S. 107th E. Ave Tulsa, Ok 74133 or by faxing the form with the deposit to 918-307-2914."

    The new league will include some AFL teams and some AFL2 teams:

    1. Arizona
    2. Arkansas
    3. Bossier-Shreveport
    4. Central Valley (Fresno, CA)
    5. Chicago
    6. Iowa
    7. Jacksonville
    8. Kentucky
    9. Milwaukee
    10. Oklahoma City
    11. Orlando
    12. Spokane, WA
    13. Tennessee Valley (Alabama)
    14. Tri-Cities Washington
    15. Tulsa
    16. Utah (Salt Lake City)
    -10-02-2009, 08:36 PM
  • Nick
    Rams raise prices for 6th year in row
    by Nick
    Rams raise prices for 6th year in row
    By Jim Thomas
    Of the Post-Dispatch
    Tuesday, Feb. 15 2005

    Like Groundhog Day, Valentine's Day and Presidents Day, it is becoming a regular part of the February calendar for Rams football fans in St. Louis. For the sixth straight year, the Rams have raised ticket prices, albeit by a moderate amount once again.

    Personal seat license (PSL) holders at the Edward Jones Dome will pay between $2 and $5 more per ticket to watch the Rams play next season. The club sent out invoices earlier this month.

    The average ticket price for 2005 is $62.44 a game, according to Michael Naughton, the Rams' vice president of ticket operations, an increase of more than $3 a ticket over the 2004 average of $59.25. Those figures are for nonpremium seating only, which excludes club seats and luxury suites.

    Bob Wallace, the Rams' executive vice president, explained the latest increase in terms similar to how he addressed previous ticket hikes.

    "Once again, it's an attempt to remain competitive," Wallace said. "It's the cost of doing business. The salary cap has gone up. Everything's more expensive."

    The Rams did not raise ticket prices during their first five seasons in St. Louis. By the end of those five seasons, they had the lowest ticket price in the league, at $34. Then again, it was hard to justify a ticket increase during the team's first four seasons here based on the product on the field. From 1995 through '98, the Rams went 22-42 and never won more than seven games in any season.

    But since the beginning of the '99 campaign, the Rams are 70-36, including five playoff berths, two Super Bowls and three division titles. After the '99 Super Bowl championship season, the club hiked ticket prices an average of nearly 24 percent.

    Since then, the ticket increases have been more modest. The overall ticket increase for both 2004 and '05 has been 5.4 percent. The cheapest seats in the Dome - the upper-deck end-zone seats - now cost $44, up $2 over last season. The most expensive seats- the lower deck and terrace level seats between the 20-yard lines - now cost $85, up $5 a game from 2004.

    In 1995, the first year for the Rams in St. Louis, the price range for tickets was $25 to $45. So the cheapest seat in the Dome in 2005 ($44) costs only $1 less than the most expensive seat did in 1995 ($45).

    In a letter sent out to season-ticket holders, team president John Shaw wrote that the Rams' season-ticket package "remains an excellent value and maintains Rams ticket costs in the middle tier of the NFL."

    The Rams feel they can remain competitive by being somewhere in the middle one-third of the league in ticket prices. Last season, the Rams' average ticket price ($59.25) ranked 14th among the 32 NFL teams, according to Wallace....
    -02-16-2005, 12:25 AM
  • RamWraith
    Rams forecast sellouts, but fans play waiting game
    by RamWraith
    By Tom Timmermann
    ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
    09/07/2006

    It's an issue that hasn't come up in these parts since the 1999 season, but it's something that could come into play as the Rams' season rolls on: Could the team's streak of selling out every game in St. Louis come to an end this year?

    The Rams open their 12th season in St. Louis on Sunday against Denver coming off a 6-10 record and with just one winning season in their past four. The Rams fired Mike Martz and brought in Scott Linehan to turn things around, but if the recovery takes time, who knows how fans will react? The Rams' first exhibition game was blacked out on local television, and the team joined Edward Jones to buy up 2,000 seats at the deadline to get the second game on local TV. And at those games, the number of no-shows was noticeable. Several games toward the end of the season have a few thousand tickets available.

    "Football fans are sophisticated,'' said Rams president John Shaw. "They know there are cycles in sports. I would be surprised if any of our regular season games don't sell out."

    To date, only two of the Rams' eight home games -- against Kansas City and Chicago -- are sold out, and Sunday's opener against Denver almost assuredly will reach that status today. Rams vice president Bob Wallace said about 2,000-3,000 tickets remain at most for other games. But fans may be taking a wait-and-see approach.

    "We're not talking about many tickets," Wallace said. "We put individual tickets on sale right before the blackout, and that slowed things down for the regular-season games. Especially if we have early season success, we'll sell out the ones later in the year."

    The problem, of course, would be if they don't. Since the Rams got off to a 6-0 start and streaked to the Super Bowl in 1999, Rams tickets have been hard to come by and even last year, whether or not games would sell out was never an issue. But in 1998, when the team had its fourth losing record in as many seasons in St. Louis, the team and local TV stations had to dip into their pockets several times to buy remaining seats to put the game on local television, and there were numerous no-shows at games. To date, every regular-season Rams home game has been televised locally.

    Shaw and Wallace say the Rams haven't significantly changed their marketing budget for the year, though the team did go out and hire a marketing consultant, Bob Reif, who used to work with the Miami Dolphins and the Indy Racing League. "You bring in a fresh set of eyes to make sure you're not missing anything,'' Wallace said. Reif declined an interview request on the Rams' marketing plans.

    Wallace said, "I think every year you look to try to expand your brand to try to get people excited about the coming season. Obviously, it's easier coming off an 11-5 playoff season than...
    -09-07-2006, 11:18 AM
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