Saturday, October 06, 2007

New Stadium A Home Run for Omaha...Unless We Choose to Forfeit

More details were announced about the proposed downtown stadium for the College World Series, and the more I read, the more I realize what a no-brainer this is to do. Yet, I can't believe the nay-sayers who are outraged about this.

Are you f-ing kidding me? Are you really that stupid?

We have an incredible opportunity to lock in the College World Series for an unprecedented 20 years. The NCAA doesn't do deals like this. Ask the folks in Kansas City about it; they thought the NCAA would never leave. Then one day, the moving vans showed up and just like that, the NCAA was in Indianapolis. They also thought that Big 8/12 basketball would never leave; then the Texans who control the Big XII yanked it from the longtime home.

Grab the golden ring, Omaha. Don't be stupid.

It doesn't come without a cost. $95-$115 million is not chump change. But look at the rewards:

One Billion Dollars

Say it with a "Dr. Evil" twist: "One Billlllllllllllllllllllllllion Dollars!" That's the economic impact of a 20 year contract for the College World Series. Seriously, who in their right mind can say "No!" to this idea?

Don't like the proposed 2% "entertainment" tax? OK...let's find an alternative. You might say that we can't afford it...but can we afford losing the College World Series? If Omaha loses the College World Series, watch your taxes go up with the loss of out-of-town revenue. Not to mention the loss of prestige as Omaha loses it's premier event.

Nitpick the details if you wish. Some might argue the $25 million renovation of Rosenblatt makes sense. That'll buy the CWS another 5 years, maybe. Then we'll get the next bill...probably another $25 million for the next 5 years. Lather, rinse, repeat. Yes, we could hope to put together 4 singles and come out the same. Or worse... still lose the CWS after plunking a bunch of money into it. Or find out in 5 years that we need to spend $50 on top of the $25 million we need to spend now.

Don't screw this up, Omaha.


TB said...

Damn right, Mike. I'm not an Omahan, and never will be, but I love coming up to Omaha for the CWS. Please keep it there.

Jon Johnston said...

Interesting that people are whining about this - here in Minnesota we've had that whine for a few years now about the Twins and the Vikings. Most of it is centered around the fact that big-buck owners should be building these stadiums, not taxpayers.

Here you have a sport that doesn't high a high-buck owner, but the whining is still loud. $100-$125 million for a stadium? That's cheap!

We just lost a bridge that's going to cost a massive amount of money, easily two to three times Omaha's proposed stadium. Why so much? That's the cost of things these days!

People hate change. People in charge know what needs to be done. Imagine if you're the mayor who let the CWS get away. You ever going to live in your town again?