Sports Economist: City/State Has Upper Hand in Rams Stadium Talks
ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOX) – As KMOX reported earlier this week Missouri Governor Jay Nixon is not ruling out state aid to help keep the Rams in St. Louis, but a local sports economist says that as of now, state and local officials have the upper hand in talks with the team.
“For this particular year I don’t think it’s a concern,” Webster University’s Pat Rishe tells KMOX.
He says with no stadium deal imminent in Los Angeles, Stan Kroenke has nowhere to move his team, also the deadline date of making that decision is still another year away.
“I don’t think fans or sponsors are going to turn their backs on the Rams at this point,” Rishe says.
He goes on to say that if that doesn’t change, Kroenke and local leaders will work out a deal.
“That would probably lead to massive improvements, and the improvements would probably cost as much as, if not more than, the $700-million that they are talking about,” he says.
Rishe also believes the two sides would split the improvements costs “a little more evenly”, so that not one side is burden.
Rishe predicts a public-private partnership where Kroenke contributes at least 50 percent, and the NFL pitches in a “small amount” from its stadium fund.