Archive for April, 2010

How the Super Bowl came to North Texas (part 2)

April 26, 2010

The Bid Committee put together a great bid for the game, which we were going to present to the 32 NFL owners in Nashville.   Three areas were bidding – Indianapolis, Phoenix, and North Texas.  We figured our biggest competition was Indianapolis, as Phoenix had already won the game for 2008.  Indianapolis was getting their new stadium before North Texas, so we thought that they might have a competitive advantage over us there. 

Going into the meeting I had a script to speak from, and we had a three minute film the committee had put together.  All the other material had already been submitted to the owners.  I started out by telling the owners that, of course, the Super Bowl was very close to my heart – I remember listening to the first Super Bowl on a Navy patrol boat over Armed Forces radio. At that time I didn’t know if I would ever play football again but I told the committee about going on to play for the Dallas Cowboys and making it to four Super Bowls –  we won two, lost two – and they had changed my life.  If we were going to host a Super Bowl in North Texas I wanted it to be the best Super Bowl in history.  I mentioned in my talk that Mr. Rooney of the Pittsburgh Steelers, would vote for us and give me a chance to win my 3rd Super Bowl.

As the voting progressed, Phoenix was eliminated and it was down to North Texas and Indianapolis.  Jerry said it was a contest between big market versus small market; but I am not sure we will ever know all the intricacies of the voting.

Roger Goodell came out and shook my hand as I heard Jerry and the whole Jones family broke into celebration. That’s when I knew we had won.  As we flew back to Dallas, I remember Jerry being so elated that he was dancing in the aisles of his plane to a Johnny Cash CD.  Just picture it!

How the Super Bowl came to North Texas (part 1)

April 20, 2010

Back in 2006, Jerry Jones left a message at the house with Marianne.  He asked me to come by his house to visit about something.  The Cowboys were having some pre-Romo quarterback troubles and I thought maybe Jerry saw my passing game at the Ticket Quarterback Challenge.  Looking back I should have known that he was not going to ask me to come out of retirement.   I told him I’d stop by.  We went into his study and he told me they were putting together a bid for the 2011 Super Bowl for North Texas and that I was his choice to chair the Super Bowl Host Committee.  The Bid Committee had already done lots of work to prepare a bid, but they needed a face of the North Texas area. 
 
I was really taken off guard.  I was very busy with my business – at the time still The Staubach Company – so I asked Jerry if I could have a couple of days to think about it.   Before deciding, I put a call into an old acquaintance from my NASCAR days, Roger Penske.  Roger had been very influential in the bid for the Detroit Super Bowl and had devoted a lot of time to that committee.  I knew I couldn’t devote as much time as Roger Penske had, but the NFL and the Cowboys had been a very important part of my life.  I wanted to support them and knew what the game could mean for North Texas.  So, I said yes and we were off and running.  Check back next week and I will tell you about the bid process.  It was a tough competition and opened my eyes to the value cities gain from hosting the Super Bowl. They really made us jump through hoops to win the bid!

What’s in store for the old Texas Stadium?

April 14, 2010

I was just a kid when my dad was tossing around touchdowns.  Most of my memories are tied to Troy Aikman when it comes to Texas Stadium quarterbacks, but as a spectator, I had the pleasure of enjoying countless games sitting beside my dad. Later in its life, Texas Stadium made memories for my son as well.  He was now the one holding his dad’s hand, walking through the same turnstiles, sitting in the same seats I did.  The old stadium might be gone, but we won’t forget the wins and losses. 

So now that Texas Stadium is gone, the next question becomes, what will happen to the old site?  It’s a premium location with three major freeways and average daily traffic counts of over 900,000 vehicles per day.  The 80-acre site would be well suited for a number of potential uses, but currently there are no formal plans or proposals on the table.  The city of Irving has indicated that they’ve received some interest from multiple legitimate developers, but with construction work on the adjacent freeways scheduled to take place over the next eight years, it’s likely that any official announcements on using the site are still years away.

I still haven’t driven by the site, but  I’m sure it will be an odd experience when off to the right I see a pile of rubble instead of the former home to America’s team.

The Super Bowl is about inclusion

April 14, 2010

Notes from our researcher, Steve Triolet
Here at Jones Lang LaSalle, diversity is a major initiative of the company—not just hiring the best and brightest but also promoting an environment where our workforce reflects the wide diversity of our clients across the globe.  What does this have to do with the Super Bowl?  Well, a large percentage of the contracts awarded for the big game go to minority owned businesses.  The program is called the NFL’s Emerging Business Program and in Super Bowl XLIII in Tampa Bay, for example, approximately $4 million in contracts were awarded to 130 local businesses that were minority or women owned.  This active promotion of diversity is something to which the NFL and Jones Lang LaSalle are both committed.

One of Jones Lang LaSalle’s ambassadors of diversity is our Chairman of the Board, Sheila Penrose.  She recently made headlines for diversity in business in the March/April issue of Diversity Executive magazine, where she discussed the benefits of having a diversity and inclusion strategy as a core value of an organization.  In the article, Sheila notes that the diversity of Jones Lang LaSalle’s board members is one example of our company’s commitment to looking more like our global employee and client base.  In her words, “You have to focus on diversity as a priority and commit to it until you succeed.”

Fond memories of Texas Stadium

April 12, 2010

I was feeling nostalgic about the old Texas Stadium coming down this week.  I have so many great memories of games played and games watched in that stadium. It definitely had that end of an era feeling. I played my first game with the Cowboys the year the stadium was built.

Here is the link to the implosion video.  http://www.dallascowboys.com/farewell/Texas_Stadium_Implosion.cfm

But, the new stadium is really something.  It’s hard to take it all in – from the floors on up everything is first class.  It is really over the top.  They even have a wine bar.  You have to be there to appreciate it, and no other stadium compares.  The old Cowboy stadium was small compared to the new one – the new one is almost 2 ½ million square feet. The video screen in this stadium cost $40 million alone, where the whole of the old Texas Stadium was built with $30 million.

The real question for the fans is, how important will this new stadium be to the Cowboys? It’s the same 100 yard field; but it’s definitely a positive advantage.  When the roof is closed it is really loud, and that is a home field advantage for the Cowboys.

The First Pitch of Opening Day

April 6, 2010

 

Yesterday was opening day out at the Ranger’s ballpark and I threw out the first pitch.  I had gotten some advice from Troy Aikman about throwing off the rubber because Troy really didn’t throw well the year he did it. Throwing from the rubber means you are actually throwing down.  When I threw out the first pitch in San Diego I threw it low then like Troy did.  If I am throwing straight, I’m ok, but I’m not used to being up high. To make sure I got the pitch right, I went out last week out to throw a few in my backyard.  My basketball court is about the same distance – 60 feet 6 inches – so I was using that to get the feel of it. 

Anyway, Opening Day was great and I had a good throw.  However, I did hear that last night on the news Dale Hansen said I did well – but followed the compliment with “and Roger’s about 88 years old”.  He was off by about 20 years but at least I got a good review.