Reader Forum: Steelers ownership in turmoil
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The Rooney family is working to restructure the ownership of the Steelers to comply with National Football League guidelines that prohibit association with racetrack and gambling interests, a process that is forcing several brothers of team chairman Dan Rooney to seek to sell their shares in the franchise, either to family members or outside investors. [ Read story ]
Here's what you had to say about the situation:
A multi-billionaire who tailgates and paints his face black and gold? Who'd a thunk it.
Timothy Bridgeman, Carnegie
I too would like to see the Rooney's in control. My dad was a bat boy for a baseball team Art Rooney ran and always spoke highly of him. He has left us a great legacy.
But what is all the fuss about. As I understand it, Dan and Art Jr. want to stay with football. They each own 16% of the Steelers. But by the accounts, they must each own 20% of the racing business. However they have to divest themselves of their shares in racing. That means they have to offer up 40% of the ownership of the racing. They must buy up 48% of the Steelers from their brothers. If, as articles have been saying, the racing is worth more than the football, then perhaps 40% of the racing might be worth 48% of the football. If that is the case, the brothers could just make a switch costing nobody anything and that would leave Dan and Art Jr. each owning 40% of the Steelers which would then take care of the league wanting someone to own at least 30% (although I do not believe Green Bay satisfies that requirement). But if it is true that the racing is worth more than the team and 2 want football while 3 want racing, with the trade I am mentioning, any other amounts which might have to change hands to even things out should be easily manageable for folks with the kind of money they have. It seems to me this should keep everyone happy from the 5 brothers to those of us fans who want to keep the team's traditional ownership.
Bro. Patrick Carney, Wayne, N.J., (originally from East Liberty)
To me the easiest solution to the Steelers ownership problem is this. Let the brothers who wish to continue their ownership of the Steelers cut the ties they have to the casinos/horse tracks and the brothers that want to own the casino/horse tracks cut their ties to the Steelers. Why should the brothers be compensated for selling their portion of the Steelers when the brothers that are getting out of the casino/horse track venues get nothing.
Tom Hunt, Penn Hills
As a Pittsburgher and lifelong Steelers fan living in Navarre FL, I too like many of you who posted, are in anguish over the ownership situation. All the posts, good or bad, bring something to the table...We, as part of the largest and most successful franchise and NFL fan base, the Steeler nation deeply cares about the franchise and its direction. Our Brothers and Sisters all over the U.S. and abroad care about the Steelers. I believe that there are many factors that have led to this situation, some documented, others not. Mr. Dan Rooney has done a superb job running the team after The Chief. However, I think there are many family matters that to which are not seen to the public, that contributed as well as well as old wounds that may not have healed within the inner family circles. The firing of Art Jr., the master architect of drafting the greatest teams of the 70's, in 1985, is one instance, although it was public and there are other factors as well, I think was the tip of the iceburg. Personally, I feel, with Mr Dan Rooney, being as business savvy as he is and driven to do it the way that he wanted to do it, I believe that the other Rooney Brothers were basically left out of the management of the team scene and sent to run other entities of the family business...much like Fredo in the Godfather. And this is often inherent of family owed businesses, so this is not anything new. There are three things that are troubling for me on the business side of the house though, the NFL itself, the NFL guidelines, and the amount of "big business" moving into the team ownership ranks. The NFL, lets face it, as they see it, it revolves around the big markets...not ours. Some people are correct when they say it puts the Steelers at a "comparative disadvantage. The NFL guidleines in regards to the gambling connections, etc...this is was the precursor that built the NFL into what it basically is today in regards to it being a financial jugernaut, long before the marketing and its products. Its important to not lose sight of that. Suddenly in today's society, gambling is such a dirty word. The NFL recently seems to have abnesia in many areas in regards to way the "old heads" ran the league so successfully because it has become the financial goliath that it is.
Its become so corporate that the fans are really left out of the equation. For all of us fans who get the Direct TV package from various providers around the U.S., you see how little regard that the NFL has for the fans, but we get it to support our Steelers. The thrird item which is problematic is the "Wall Street" connection with many of these NFL teams, not only with the current situation of the Steelers. Call it as you may, but in almost any "Ethics in Business book", Wall Street and Banking is often listed near the top as the most unethical of businesses. Owning
a racetrack and/or casino is not.
Unfortunately, being a Spygate cameraman for the New England Patriots did not make the list either. I, like many others, DO NOT want a Dan Snyder type coming in if that day would ever come.
All in all, as fans, I believe that we are so lucky to have the tradition and pride in our having the greatest franchise of all time that DOES NOT have to buy a Super Bowl win through free agency, and the great Rooney family, who has been the caretaker of that for so many years, and to my estimation, will own the Steelers for eternity.
Will Safos, Navarre, FL
Like most everyone else in "Steeler Nation" I have great respect for the Rooney family and the way they have managed this team. The Steelers, the City of Pittsburgh, and the Rooneys just seem synonymous. They have assured stability, delivered championship teams and have provided the City of Pittsburgh and Steeler Nation with a sense of pride with their integrity. I am proud to call myself a member of Steeler Nation and, for what it is worth, would like to make a suggestion.
How about taking a percentage of the shares and allow members of Steeler Nation to purchase some of those shares in smaller denominations. Offer shares from $50 in various amounts up to $1000. Let the fans provide some of the financing and purchase a small share in their team. It has worked for a Presidential candidate, it may just work for the Steelers as well.
Tom Cagle, Saegertown, PA
Enough!!!... & give it (the Rooneys) a break. The NFL is concerned about ties with horse & dog tracks so you bring in investors with ties to Wall Street, the stock market, hedge funds & all other kinds of so called reputable investing that are to some extent gambling. As long as the team & the Rooney's business affairs are on the up & up, what is the problem?
Tracey Schmitt, Seminole, FL
It is beyond me why there is such a stir about football and gambling.
NFL Guidelines? What a joke! Football is all about gambling. Odds, over and unders, favorites.
Jim Sinclair, Westmoreland City, PA
I AM JUST DEVASTATED TO LEARN THAT THE ROONEYS WILL NOT CONTROL THE STEELERS. DO NOT THE ROONEY BROTHERS KNOW THAT THEIR FATHER WOULD BE ABSOLUTELY CRUSHED TO HEAR THAT THEY ARE GIVING UP THE STEELERS WHOM HE LOVED SO VERY MUCH. WHAT ABOUT SOME OF THE FORMER PLAYERS GOING TOGETHER AND BUYING SOME SHARES, BUT PLEASE LET THE ROONEYS HAVE THE CONTROL. PLEASE PASS THIS ALONG TO DAN AND ART ROONEY. THANK YOU!
MARSHA NORDSTROM WARREN, PA
I go back to Buddy Dial, Bobby Layne and Big Daddy Lipscomb. I can't stand the idea of someone other than the Rooneys owning the Steelers.
James Zambroski, Tampa, FL
(formerly of Butler, PA)
I have been a fan for over 20 years and watching the Steelers Super Bowl run in 2005 was something I never thought I would see. I thought nothing would surprise me after that. I was wrong. I am now extremely surprised and somewhat saddened at the prospect of this historic franchise being owned by someone other than a Rooney. However, I think we should see how it plays out. At the moment it doesn't look good but I am confident that Dan knows what he is doing because he has certainly been doing it long enough. This team is his life and even though some of this may be out of his control, I don't think he would let it fall in to the wrong hands. Unfortunately this is a sign of the times and something the Steeler Nation may have to live with. I am behind the Rooney's and most importantly I am behind this team and the great City of Pittsburgh.
Jennifer Kostelnik, Reston, VA
Enough...This story is less than 48 hours old, and everyone has the Steelers being sold, cheerleaders coming, logos on 2 sides of the helmet, Big Name Free Agents, etc., let Dan and Art work with their brothers or new investors. Infusion of new money could be a blessing, maybe an addition to Heinz Field so more loyal fans could get seats. Dan will prevail and the Steelers will move forward and prosper.
F. J. Korkowski, Lorton, Va (formerly from McKees Rocks)
I'm saddened by the prospect of the Rooney family no longer controlling the franchise. I'd also expect the players and staff to be unsettled, because most NFL franchises don't have the "family" attitude that the Steelers do. I was born in Pgh. In 1959, so I can remember both the glory days of the '70's and some of the learn times that preceded them. Without the Rooney's patient leadership, the "good old days" may well never have come about.
However, I also believe Steeler Nation is lucky this was avoided for so long. I have been expecting this situation would occur for a long time. I don't think any of the sibs other than Dan feels strongly connected to the organization. And the amount of money involved is staggering! Like others, I hope Mr. Druckenmiller would be a benign savior, but Dan Snyder's club is just up the road. Rich successful men are quite capable of deluding themselves into believing they can succeed at anything. I guess we can only prepare for the worst & hope for the best ...
Bob Sproul, Dumfries, Va.
As a life long Pittsburgh fan now living in the Philadelphia suburbs, I too find it very sad that the Rooney family may loose control of my Steelers. But I have a suggestion. If the 4 brothers want to show loyalty to there father (not withstanding the fans and the city) each brother should sell 5.25 shares to Dan and sell the rest to Mr. D. This way Dan will control 41% of the shares, Mr. D 39%, and the Mc's 20%. Each brother will still get at the minimum 90 million for there shares. Everyone's happy!!! (My bill is in the mail) ...OMG I love the Steelers ...The Family must always be in control ... Forever!!
Joe Kirkland, Pottstown, Pa.
Steelers not owned by the Rooneys? Have we entered The Twilight Zone?
Dan Rooney has to keep control of the Steelers. With anyone else at the helm, it just won't be right.
Maybe he can persuade his brothers to sell him just enough to raise his stake to 41%. He could do it without breaking the bank. This would let Druckenmiller, an honorable man, fulfill his dream of being part of the NFL's finest franchise, while letting the other Rooney brothers cash out. Dan would remain majority owner, and the world will keep turning.
I feel bad for the next generation of Rooneys. Not owning a piece of the Steelers? The best investment ever? Their dads must be nuts!
Jeff Davidek, Pittsburgh
Considering that all the shares were inherited and the brothers do not have a personal interest in the team I think they should say thank you to Dan for what ever millions he sees fit to give them and move on and not destroy their fathers legacy for a cash grab.
Well if you ask me the only good thing that I can see out of this is maybe if this new guy gets control of the Steelers He may spend more money on the Steelers. I am tired of seeing other teams spend money on players while the Steelers let players go. I ready for the Steelers to stick it down the throats to the rest of the NFL. It does not look like it will be a bad thing as long as the Steelers stay in Pittsburgh.
Benjamin Brown, Sierra Vista Ariz.
Shocking to say the least when I read the article and I am trying to understand where the other Rooney brothers are coming from. Team is worth a mint, they are getting older and want to setup their families for life and Dan can't afford to buy them out, so they are looking elsewhere. It's said that many family businesses don't make it past the 2nd generation ...
Stanley Druckenmiller seems like an extremely smart and hardworking man. Don't get to his position in life without those traits - BUT the thing that I was most scared about was the fact that he is such a huge FAN. Painting face black n' gold - hosting the tailgate party, wearing the 43 jersey. Those are all great things if you are a fan but not the owner. I keep having images of Mark Cuban and Dan Snyder running through my mind - Especially Snyder. He wants to win so bad, he doesn't know what to do - Keep this coach, fire that coach, bring in this free agent to a HUGE bloated contract and then cut him the next year. He is so much a fan that he can't step back and let the football folks run the football team. I much prefer the steady approach of the Rooney's versus Dan Snyder's machine gun approach and only hope that if this goes through Mr. Druckenmiller is more like the Rooney's than like Dan Snyder.
No matter what happens, I'll still be a fan, but I think that I'll always associate the Steelers with the Rooney's and I hope it remains that way.
Randy Sharrer - Richmond, VA
Rooneys.. not owning the Steelers.... Please tell me it's just a bad dream!! After reading all of the responses on here I am appalled at some of you so called "fans" that say let the Ronney's go. Are you people in sane? I live in Cleveland and have been in love with the Steelers since I was 5(now 38), I sat through great years and bad years and have never ever given up on them and I don't plan to now!! A Dome, logo on the other side, is that what matters to you? The Rooneys are a constant in an ever changing world. There is an aura that that the Rooneys bring to the bring to the table. An aura of tradition, values, hardwork and never give up attitude. That's whats important. Not whether there is an logo on the other side or a dome stadium. We as Steeler fans have been blessed with great ownweship and I would hate to see it go to some slick, fast talking snake oil salesmen! I
I agree with Ms. Mauro response that the Rooneys not owning the Steelers would be devastating!
Frank Rizzo, Cleveland,OH
Being a father myself, I can't help but to think that Art Rooney Sr. -- after having so many sons! -- would EVER have guessed that his successful, legendary legacy would be flushed down the toilet in favor of a dog track! He had to have felt secure that all those MEN heirs would run his legacy long after he was gone. Instead, they want to watch Fido run around the trach. Sigh.
Atleast Dan can look towards the sky, and say, "I tried, Dad." The others, well....
Michael Boyd, Forest Hills, Pa
It seems like the Rooney brothers -- other than Dan -- are just your stereotypical multi-millionaire business men. That is sad; I would have thought them different. This is their Father's legacy, more so than a dog track in Florida! Yes, money is involved. Yes, lots of money is involved. But, they are already super-rich by most standards, and you would wish that Pittsburghers from the stock of Art Rooney would think of the tradition of the Steelers and the Rooneys over simply making more money. Just as Steeler players have signed for less over the years and lost out on potential "extra" riches, so should the greedy Rooney brothers (again, other than Dan). What a proud tradition to keep that they will be losing out on. And it is not as if this is a losing venture! This is the Pittsburgh Steelers in the ultra-successful NFL! It is not throwing your money away to hold on to the Steelers! Sorry -- but this sounds just plain greedy.
James Boyer, Pembroke Pines, Florida
I can't believe some of the stuff I've been hearing. I was in Waldorf, MD last week (suburb of D.C.), and I was with some friends, who even though they live in the Washington DC area, and the others were from Richmond, VA, they are still faithful Steelers fans. In fact, for about 6 years I lived in Central Florida. There, you can go to any number of sports grills and see Steeler games broadcasted. Got to: http://www.post-gazette.com/steelers/steelerbars.asp
See how many places to hang out if you're a Steeler fan. I saw some of these with my own eyes in Florida. Even in some foreign countries. My point, the Steelers are the most popular team in the NFL. Not even the cowboys can lay claim to that. And forget about the patriots (notice I didn't even capitalize the names). Then again the pats already have a reputation of using a few extra cameras??? Let's get this ownership stuff settled and focus on the next Super Bowl win!!! HEY, WHERE'S MY TERRIBLE TOWEL??????
Larry Scott -- McKeesport, PA
It would be a sad day in the Burg if the Rooney's lost majority control of the Steelers. It is always unfortunate that money always becomes the bigger picture. I only can say what would the Chief do in this situation. I am sure the family is making a ton of money in the racetrack and slots portion of the family business that they should and must settle this issue among themselves. If they wish to at some point offer a small portion to the billionaire then so be it but keep it in the family is what I say. Do what is in your heart and not what goes into my bank account.
Diane Stanesic, West Mifflin
I think it is pathetic that the Rooney brothers are interested in a few extra dollars rather than keeping the Steelers in Rooney control. Obviously family means little and money means more to people that are pretty wealthy already. It is hard to imagine the Steelers not primarily owned by a Rooney... and again totally pathetic that these brothers are at such odds that they prefer to destroy a family legacy. I have lost all respect for these other brothers and feel sorry for Dan and his son Art who obviously wanted to keep the team in Rooney control. Since the other brothers find it so much profitable to be involved with the race tracks and gambling, they obviously are more interested in hurting their brother than selling to him at a reasonable family cost. I find it unrealistic that nothing will change if the team is not in Rooney control... maybe not right away, but I am sure it will... just not sure if it is for the better or worse. I hope these brothers come to their senses and realize family legacy is worth more. Again do they need the extra few million when they have so much money already!!!!!
Renee Minnemeyer-Climo, White Twp., PA
Druckenmiller seems a low key billionaire. He is not like 2 egos like Jerry Jones and Daniel Snyder. He is a loyal Steeler fan and keeps a low profile. I give him my support. My advice to him is NO CHEERLEADERS PLEASE!!!!!
Steelers without the Rooney family this is not something we fan of the Steelers would like. The Steelers will always be associated with the Rooney and I hate to see that change. Even though I live in Dallas, Texas these two will always be a part of my family.
A fan to the Steelers and The Rooneys.
I don't think much of it at this time. The Rooney's will run the Steelers no matter what. I do think though that this is an opportune time for the Rooney Family to control the North Shore Development. With Don Barden having all of his financial issues with regards to the casino funding. I would not be surprised to see the other Rooney brothers take this situation off of his hands and take control of the North Shore!
Bob Johnston North Versailles
The only entity in turmoil is this newspaper. No advertisers, less content, lame writers, weird political leanings. I could go on and on but most people in this town will never see this letter.
Paul McCarthy, Green Tree
This is a tough one! No need to panic on one hand. Druckenmiller expressed an interest to the McGinley's ten years ago. On the other hand, however, big bucks trumps family loyalty every time, and if Druckenmiller waves enough cash in front of the Rooney brothers -- you know the old saying -- money talks and BS walks. The race tracks are more profitable for the Rooneys than the Steelers and to an objective eye, sell out would be the way to go. This is a time, though, to prevent The Chief from turning over in his grave, as it is a time for the rogue Rooney brothers to step up and accept Dan's offer.
Ask Dan how it feels to be squeezed like he squeezed the taxpayers to build him a new stadium. I thought Dan was a clown from the day he fired his brother for showing him up in football knowledge.
Joe Sinkovic, McKees Rock's Pa.
A famous bank robber was asked why he robbed banks, whereby he responded, "that's where the money is."
Like sheep, Pittsburghers will flock to the casinos. And people with money will know how to invest here. It's not about the Steelers, and it's not about Pittsburgh. It's about the money. It's always about the money. Remember, for casinos to be winners, the players must be losers. I wish the Rooneys well, as the sheep have been lining up for a long time.
David Marks, Duquesne PA
I'm in a bit of shock. I don't live in Pittsburgh. I'm not from Pittsburgh, I'm a welshman exiled to New Zealand but still my one solitary year in Pittsburgh left me with a deep love for the city and particularly the Steelers. If I were in Mr Druckenmiller's enviable position I must admit, I'd be looking to buy as well. If for no other reason than to keep my beloved Steelers from falling into the hands of someone who'd seek to move them or remove Dan and Art Rooney II from management. Pittsburgh stays in your blood and it's because of that that I say if the Steelers have to be sold outside the Rooney family someone like Mr Druckenmiller is a best case scenario. However, if I was in Mr Druckenmiller's position I'd be seeking to partner up with Dan Rooney to make a 50/50 split. We have no way of predicting what the following generations would do to our club. A 50/50 split would seem to be a perfect scenario as both families would then retain a veto over any major decision. It should not just be about securing the Steelers immediate future but about securing it for the next century as well. Mr. Druckenmiller sounds like a true fan who will not betray The Chief's legacy but rather embrace it. I hope we can say the same for his children and his grandchildren.
Ben Morgan, Wellington, New Zealand
What greed! The Chief is rolling over in his grave. Shame on the "Band of Brothers" who would rather make a few more millions than keep the team under family control! They should each sell Dan 9-10% to enable him to become the majority owner, and then they can sell the remaining 6-7% to the highest bidder regardless of who it is. They would still get tens of millions each.
The Rooneys ARE the Steelers!
Matt Froehlich, Denver, CO
(McKees Rocks, PA native)
I think the Rooney brothers should sell out to Steely McBeam. If I have to live with him, so should they.
Ed Christie, Austin, TX
formerly from Springdale)
I've been a lifelong Steeler fan, born in Greensburg in 1964 and transplanted to Tennessee in 1977. Over all those years there has always been the Steelers. (It's always been the Steelers Ray). If the thought of the Rooney's losing control of the Steeler franchise doesn't bring tears to your eyes then you just dont understand what being a Steeler fan is all about.
Bob Painter, Knoxville TN
The Steelers are about GRIT and TRADITION. The Rooney's are a family of CLASS. To the Steeler Nation: HAVE FAITH.
Kathy Sluck, Centreville, VA
I can't believe some of the comments I've been reading from people who would like to see the Rooney's gone. I'm a Steelers fan who lives in the Cincinnati area and I've seen some bad owners but there's a reason why most rational people consider Dan Rooney one the best and classiest owners in all sport. I personally would rue the day that the Rooney family would not be connected with the Steelers. Hopefully, a plan can be worked out either through the brothers or through the participation of someone like Druckenmiller to keep Dan and/or Art III in charge for years to come.
Randy Byrd, Erlanger, Ky.
Truly selling newspapers is still important in this age of the internet and associated outlets. I cannot help but wonder how anyone could consider a family discussion about the future holdings as "turmoil". This is not only irresponsible journalism but an affront to citizens of Pittsburgh and Steelers fans worldwide. As a lifelong fanwho has watched them in Europe and in North Africa on Yahoo (a sad game when we lost to Arizona last year), I am troubled by this hyperbole.
It should be noted that this discussion has been going on for over 2 years and nothing seems to indicate a protracted struggle or anything resembling "turmoil". A franchise is valued for more than its monetary and physical assets. The reason a mid sized franchise like the Steelers is valued so highly is its loyal and rabid fanbase, in other words an increase in value due to its enormous appeal. Lets be clear, a lot of that appeal comes from the owners, a deeply respectable one at that. The Rooneys are not the Snyders, Krafts, Glazers etc, they remain a rarity in professional sports. Football is all they do and have deep ties to the community. Neither of them jet to France or have shallow starlets in the owners box. In other words they are like us, a deeply commited and dare I say it a deeply religious owners at that. I have met many fans who switch allegiances based on the performance of their teams. I HAVE MET NO FAIR WEATHER STEELER FAN YET. My favorite retort to people who question my loyalty "The Steelers can go 0-16 till I die but I will die a HAPPY Steelers fan" So please report the news without editorializing or if the latter is important confine it to the Op-Ed pages where is belongs. Thanks and hoping for a successful 2008 season for Mike Tomlin and OUR Pittsburgh Steelers.
Pradeep Kumar, Burtonsville, Md.
According to Mr. Wurzer from Florida, knowing how to manage a football team entails all of: getting cheerleaders and having logos on both sides of the helmets! I always thought managing a team well meant winning championships, which the Rooney's seem to have done a pretty good job of. They are what every sports owner should strive to be like. They don't micro-manage and stand on the sidelines every game trying to coach, like some owners (Jerry Jones). For all the criticism they receive about not spending enough, where has spending loads and loads of money on a superstar player taken the Dallas Cowboys, or Philadelphia Eagles lately(T.O. for those of you who couldn't figure it out)? Not spending all of their money on a few celebrity players and instead spending it on many players who are consistent in their play, but not superstars, has resulted in a very good record. And, had Mr. Wurzer done any research into this topic, Mr. Cuban c annot own an NFL team because NFL rules prohibit the owning of another professional sports team, except if it's a Major League Soccer teams and AFL teams (Again, for those of you who don't know, Mr. Cuban owns the Dallas Mavericks, and NBA team). Not like anyone should want him as the Steelers' owner anyways. And one last point, no other owner has guided their franchise to five Superbowl wins!
Will Smith, New Brighton
To whom it may concern: Next time try to make the headline a bit more sensational. Thank you.
Scott Mahan, Pittsburgh
Maybe Don Barden can purchase the Rooney brothers' stake. Oh wait ...
Peter Majeski, New York City
I am not originally from Pittsburgh but have been a Steelers Fan since the 90's and one of the reasons why I became a vivid fan of the Steelers was the Rooney Family. They are great for the sport and have been involved on all the major events through out the existence of the NFL. They are one of the reasons why we have the NFL at all (please read his biography). What attracted me to them the most is the fact that they will be fair to the players, they want players who truly love the sport and want to play rather than just make money. We have 5 Super Bowls and I have no doubt in my mind we'll win more in the near future. I'd much rather lose and be proud to be a Steelers' Fan rather than winning but worried about our players making the news for killing dogs or beating up their baby mammas. HERE GO WE STEELERS, HERE WE GO
George Bracamonte, Longwood, Fla.
The Steeler Nation needs to revoke memberships to those that think that the Rooney family is not the best ownership group in all professional sports. Family owned businesses go through periods where some descendants branch off into other endeavors. Unfortunately, three of the Rooney boys have decided to have business affairs that run against the NFL belief system. No problem. The process of buying them out is in progress and a private affair has been brought to the public attention. The articles that have been written give a "doom and gloom" outlook. Why? It sells papers. When you are dealing with a $1 billion enterprise buying out 48% of the ownership group will take time and a lot of money. The Rooneys will need help from an outside source but that does not mean that the franchise will change hands. In the end, the Rooney family will be at the helm to celebrate 100 years and beyond as owners of the best run franchise in professional sports.
Tim Bowers, Peters Township
Please! All you people who want change go ahead and change ... To another team. Mark Cuban? What championship teams does he own?
You guys just don't get it, there a Steelers Way, a plan. Everyone is on the same sheet of music with the plan. People lean a system and then execute, its simple its basic. I think the Rooney's have done just fine, hope they stay in control for another 75. Last Years Super Bowl winner played Steelers Football. Defense, Ball control, few mistakes. I could go on and on.
P. Walters, Long Island New York
It is just plain shocking that any Steeler fan would want cheerleaders, logos on both sides, or a dome. It's not about being old-fashioned, it's about being awesome, man.
On a separate note, to criticize the Steeler organization for not winning enough is just so absurd, I'm not sure what to say. And criticizing the Rooneys for not spending enough amounts to the same
thing--the premise is that more spending will bring more winning, but we are already in the elite of the elite where winning is concerned.
Try to have some perspective yinz.
Joe Fiorelli, Washington, D.C.
The Steelers are notorious for asking their players to take a "hometown discount" during contract negotiations in return for the honor of playing for a legendary franchise with great owners and a passionate, worldwide fan base. Now it's time for the current owners to accept something similar in the form of a reasonable valuation. If Dan's four brothers each own 16% of an $800 million team, that's $128 million per brother -- not too shabby considering they're not involved with the day to day operation of the team. When you add the fact that each stake springs from 16% of $2,500 (that's 400 bucks), well, you would hope that all of the owners would realize the fortunate hand they've been dealt in life, act like gentlemen, and do what's best for the team, the city, the Steelers legacy, and of course, the Rooney's themselves.
John Kaminski, Montclair, NJ
Maybe the Rooney's should sell the team entirely to the investor. Maybe they can figure out how we can win more games and Super Bowls instead of playing it as usual the old fashion way. The Steelers have had not changed much at all in their style of play nor the way the current owners handle business. Maybe we can be the next New England Patriots, less cheating of course. Something has to give, the Rooney's need to go
Thomas Ziemba, Chesapeake, Virginia
Gas at over $4, a record forclosure rate, a city with massive debt and we're worried about billionaires?
A.J. Ule, Pittsburgh
To the guy from formerly Etna just keep it that way and don't ever come back. You obviously don't know anything about a class organization and how great the Rooney's are. If you want a dome move to New Orleans or Houston. As long as the Rooney's keep control everything will be fine. They have had the most input over the years on the rules and regulations of the NFL so they now have to abide by them. Bring another Super Bowl back to the Burgh. HERE WE GO STEELERS HERE WE GO.
Kevin P. Morrin, Forest Hills, Pa
Fractional ownership of a major sports franchise has never worked effectively or efficiently. Those franchises that are successful have a "deep pockets owner" who is committed to winning.
I love the Steelers more than life itself, but I think change is necessary with all due respects to the Rooney's. I admire the Rooney's heart but not their cheapness and their lack of professionalism.
I hope that the Steelers can stay in Pittsburgh but even that may be in doubt economically. As I watch the Steelers play from Denver, I am embarrased by a field that is a mess and a management that tolerates off field transgressions with silly sexist explanations.
Bring on a professional,wealthy owner! The city of Pittsburgh, the fans, and the Steelers deserve better. Let the Rooney's go to the dogs.
Bill Doty, Golden, Colorado (by way of Aliquippa, Pa.)
Would someone in Florida please slap Bob Wurzer? "sell to someone who knows how to manage a football team"? I think they wrote the book pal! The fact that you mention Mark Cuban and the Rooney's in the same sentence is an insult to the Rooney's.
The Steelers organization and the Rooney family will be fine.
Doug McClure, Cleveland, Oh
For many who believe the Rooney's selling the Steelers would be just another business transaction, I hope to provide some insight as to why it would be devastating to others ...
I am fully aware of the financial costs of trying to compete in this league; however some things are more important than money! The Rooney's are looked upon as one of the patriarchs of this league and have always been highly regarded for building Championship caliber teams comprised of players consistent with the blue collar ethics and values they were raised on, the same values and ethics that built this town and this country for that matter! They are the pinnacle of football owners and are at the core of our being the pinnacle of football towns! There has always been a sense of pride that goes with saying you are a Steelers fan; it's more than an allegiance to a team and its related sport, it's an allegiance to a culture, a community, in a town built on and steeped in tradition! Steelers fandom is something bigger, something much more profound, it is part of you, in your blood, running through your veins, it symbolizes your belief in working hard, taking pride in it and NEVER giving up! Regardless of gender, race or socioeconomic background it unites this town, standing together with a strength so strong not even MacArthur himself could bring us down!
Lore has it that it was a lucky day at the track that afforded Rooney the opportunity to build what has become one of the most consistent and winningest franchises in NFL history. Lady luck may have given birth to the Steelers, but it was Rooney's commitment that raised us! The antithesis of the status quo, Art Rooney believed in doing it his way, patiently building his dynasty and legacy, it took forty years to nurture his child into a flourishing, productive adult and it was persistence, fortitude and passion that saw him through! The same persistence, fortitude and passion that define Pittsburgh and its people, including the Rooney's!
The Chief must be turning over in his grave at the mere suggestion of his life's work being auctioned off to the highest bidder! Regardless of the fact Rooney actually sold the team for a very brief stint in 1941, the Rooney's are and always have been the cornerstone of the Steelers Nation! People thought it was a travesty when the Colts moved to Indy and the Browns to Baltimore, the Rooney's not owning the Steelers is the equivalent of Armageddon to the Steelers Nation!
Cristy L. Mauro, C.P.A.
Three words: Initial Public Offering. Just think about how fun the tailgating would be at the annual shareholders meeting held each summer in Latrobe!
Patrick Riley, Marlinton, WV (formerly of the Nor'side)
finally.....sell the STEELERS to someone who knows how to manage a football team...maybe then we"ll finally get CHEERLEADERS.....the LOGO on both sides of the helmet......a decent playing field, not the MUD bowl that we have now....the STEELERS will never be moved out of PITTSBURGH....the NFL would never allow it, not with a waiting list for seats
the OLD ways of the ROONEY'S are stale......new blood is needed, new ways adopted
I for one have never liked the cheapness of the ROONEY family......a domed stadium probably would have gotten us a super bowl once in a while...but they were to cheap to spend their millions on one......an being hypocritical, fighting BARDEN on his CASINO when they own racetracks and gambling ... no its time for them to go ... has anyone contacted MARK CUBAN??????
BOB WURZER, PALM HARBOR, FL
formally from ETNA,PA
I cant believe Gary Dulac and your paper would have the headline " STEELER OWNERSHIP IN TURMOIL." You , I and everyone who knows the Steelers and thier ownership knows that it isn't in turmoil. They have to make some changes as every owner does once in a while. I am insulted and i hope other Pittsburghers are also at your headline. Your words could of been alittle better chosen.
todd walker, muncy pa
I am not worried at all.....the steelers are a class act and this will continue into the future!!!!!
Robert A. Beskid
This is yet another example of the Rooney family being honorable in their responsibilities to the Steelers and to the NFL. We are blessed with the greatest ownership in professional sports. Hopefully the family will be able to resolve this in a manner that will allow Dan and Art II to continue in the outstanding leadership of the Steelers. They are a treasure to Pittsburgh and Steelers Nation.
Andrew E. Spade, Lititz, PA
The losers in this scenario will be the fans and players. There is no corporation on the face of the earth that will be committed to winning, only profits. The Steelers are a very profitable commodity because of the fans nation and worldwide. Let's just hope we can keep it in the family otherwise we may have a culture of corporate losing headed our way, similar to the pirates. That in my opinion would be far worse than the Rooney's having their hand in dog racing.
As a life long Steeler fan, the thought of the Steelers being owned by anyone other than the Rooneys seems mind boggling. I understand the rulings of the NFL and agree with them. I also understand that the interested parties will want fair value for there shares and that does not always come from family. Rather than sell to outside investor would it make sense to open a number of shares to the Fans or Season ticket holders? Dan and Art would still have controlling interest and Fans would surely pay a premium to say they have a part of ownership. This also would help ensure that the Steelers would remain in Pittsburgh.
Paul, Snellville GA
(Season Ticket holder 35 years)
I was in shock! I am 7 hours ahead in Qatar so I read the paper before most Americans wake up. I would have never guessed this; although I knew the day would come eventually. For the sake of the chief, I hope the brothers can work this out peacefully and keep it within the family. Whoever wants to stay in should get a hometown discount on the "value" just like they ask the players to do at times. I am very proud of what the Rooney's have built and would hate to see some billionaire come in at this point and mess it up. KEEP IT IN THE FAMILY.
Kevin Ferra, Qatar (originally from Shaler)
First Published July 8, 2008 8:40 am