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Perez: Examining the stadium situation of the Oakland Raiders

For the Oakland Raiders, it has always been tough to find a place to call home. Having emerged as the home for a professional football team against all odds, Oakland was selected to receive the eighth AFL franchise as a way to appease the demands of Los Angeles Chargers owner Barron Hilton, who wanted a second team on the West Coast.

However, when the Raiders began as a franchise in 1960, there were no stadiums in Oakland that were suitable for hosting a football team at the time. As such, Raiders management was unsure about where to look to stage home games. Cal refused to lend Memorial Stadium to the Raiders, leaving the Raiders to look to Kezar Stadium as their first home field. Subsequently, the Raiders were permitted to use Candlestick Park for the final three home games of their first official season.

In 1961, the Raiders were allowed to play exclusively at Candlestick Park. However, one of the team owners, Y. Charles Soda, still threatened to move the Raiders out of the area if a stadium was not built in Oakland to host the Raiders. This threat prompted the Raiders’ move to Frank Youell Field in Oakland from 1962 to 1965.

Later, the Raiders were given the newly built Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum as their home stadium, as the Silver and Black played their first game at O.co in 1966. Along with the Raiders, the Kansas City Athletics (founded in Philadelphia as the Philadelphia Athletics) took interest in the new stadium and made a move to The Town, becoming the Oakland Athletics in the process.

***

Fast forward to the present, and things are still not bright for the Raiders. Oakland has not made the playoffs since 2002, with its lease of the O.co Coliseum expiring at the end of the upcoming season. As such, the Raiders are on the prowl for a new home. Unless the Raiders can come to an agreement with the city of Oakland on a new stadium, Oakland may lose the franchise for the second time in 35 years.

The city of Oakland worries that a new stadium for the Raiders will cost over a billion dollars. As such, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell suggested that the Raiders could rent Levi’s Stadium from the San Francisco 49ers, but Raiders owner Mark Davis has rejected the idea.

The A’s, which recently signed a new 10-year lease, but can opt out the deal after 2018 with minimal financial penalties, also factor into the Raiders’ future. This is because negotiations between the city of Oakland and the Raiders have included the possibility of demolishing the O.co Coliseum, which would sabotage the new 10-year lease that the A’s just agreed to.

As one can see, it is a really tricky situation. The A’s were also previously angling for their own stadium in San Jose, but Major League Baseball convinced them of staying in Oakland. In my estimation, the best move for the Raiders seems to be finding a new home outside of Oakland, with Davis strongly pushing for this option.

Los Angeles and San Antonio are at the top of the list for landing the Raiders in the future. In particular, let’s not forgot to mention that the Raiders moved to L.A. in 1982, where they remained until their return to Oakland in 1994.

A recent joint practice between the Raiders and the Dallas Cowboys in Los Angeles drew 8,000 fans, with most in attendance sporting the silver and black; the fans even proceeded to start a chant to bring the Raiders back to L.A.  Magic Johnson also believes that Los Angeles is ready to once again for an NFL team should the Raiders opt to return.

Most recently, news has focused on the possibility that San Antonio may have a chance to land the Raiders. On the other hand, Tom Osborn and Josh Baugh, in a report for San Antonio Express News, give insight on why this move may not ultimately happen. For one thing, the town’s beloved NBA franchise, the San Antonio Spurs, are opposed to the Raiders’ possible move to south Texas.

In their report, Osborn and Baugh also highlight the Raiders’ lack of recent success as a potential stumbling block to the move. While the Spurs have won five titles in the last 15 years, the Raiders’ last championship came in 1983. Furthermore, the Raiders have also not made the playoffs since their last Super Bowl appearance in 2002. Therefore, the Silver and Black’s complete implosion over the last decade as a franchise may deter would-be host cities, including San Antonio.

Finally, according to NBC Sports, the Spurs also worry that if the Raiders were to move to San Antonio, the health of the basketball franchise would be undermined by competition in the market for revenue streams like sponsorships, suite rentals and ticket sales.

***

For now, the Raiders will likely stay at the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum for one more season. Nevertheless, the franchise will be anxious over what the future holds for them. Regardless of the final outcome, the next few months figure to be filled with contentious debate over the fate of a historic and proud franchise.

Contact Edward Perez at edwardp.nbtb13 ‘at’ gmail.com.

  • randyalbin

    what is with the niners stadium? where do the fans park? bring back the older niner and raiders teams. they were fun to watch. the stanford stadium is not bad. bring back the old days

  • Holy Toledo

    I understand the Raiders don’t like the dirt infield and the A’s hate the damage the Raiders do to the outfield grass. Someone explain to me why they didn’t install a synthetic playing surface? It might appease both groups for the short term.

  • NO NFL IN LA

    People seem to forget that any relocation will require 24 of the 32 NFL owners to approve it. And if anyone seriously believes that they will grant a Mark Davis-led franchise the approval to control the SoCal market, you’re crazy. The NFL is aiming for an owner such as the Rams Stan Kroenke to make the jump. Kroenke has the ability to purchase the land (as he already has with the 60 acres in Inglewood–in between the Forum and Hollywood Park), and can afford to build, own, and operate his own stadium. Davis can do none of this, and would need 3rd party financial assistance. And no investor is going to lend Davis a helping hand without a large return. Raiders to L.A.? A non-starter, as is San Antonio. Davis would be a fool to turn his back on his entire CA fan base. Like it or not, he’s stuck for now.

  • Paddy

    I’d actually prefer the Rams to go back to LA just so another team can be added to the west coast from a far off location. It is almost head scratching that LA doesn’t own an NFL team though. Hopefully they’ll get one soon enough. I wouldn’t mind the Seahawks not having to travel to St. Louis for a game every year, but I suppose Oakland is probably the next best option without forcing a change to the AFCW or NFCW divisions.

  • Pridenpoise

    Mark Davis is not Al Davis, a point that you seem to be stuck on, the NFL is dying to get a franchise back in L.A and with the Raiders already having a huge fan base their, and let’s face it investors will not be a problem, it is after all an NFL team, the Raiders are the logical choice to move back. The only one that’s crazy is you, because the Raiders are moving back to La La Land, so get over it.

  • Pridenpoise

    If it was only about a dirt field then it would be an easy fix, you’re missing the big picture, the stadium is a DUMP.

  • John Medeiros

    Hey Einstein , her logic is that why dont they go half on a new stadium that would be shared ,yes they wouldlike their own stadium but it could work if planned and done right.

  • Raider lifer

    Rams or any other team won’t make it in southern Cali the raider nation is to strong out here they won’t have many loyal fans and ticket sales will be really low but many will say it ain’t true because we have menny haters I think the raiders can come back and bring a lot of biz and will be backed by the city it’s a no brainier

  • Raider lifer

    It’s much more than just that they deserve there own stadium that they can call home plus the pipes are really old and it stinks it gets flooded and yea it’s pretty dumb that they have to play part of the season on dirt

  • John Galt

    No one builds stadiums for both football and baseball anymore. The playing dimensions are so different that the sight lines inevitably end up being terrible for one of them (often both).

  • John Galt

    To some extent I think you are right. I think the Rams are going to end up back in LA, probably within the next 5 years. But the San Antonio rumor does have legs. They have a stadium there that the Raiders could play in now. There would need to be a more long term solution than the Alamodome, though, or the Raiders would be moving again 20 years from now.

  • Pridenpoise

    Hey burnout, I suggest you read the comment again, or have someone read it to you, since your ability to comprehend seems to be lacking. It doesn’t say anything about a new stadium, it’s about installing a “Synthetic field” asshole. And another thing, where do you see a football franchise and a baseball franchise sharing a stadium, you don’t because it’s not feasible, any idiot knows that, well you’re the only idiot that doesn’t know it.

  • Holy Toledo

    Tell us something we don’t know. YES they both need new facilities. Thank you Captain Obvious. But this will take years. Yes, years…Go ask the 49ers and they will tell you the process. Go ask Andy Dolich… He will tell you the same.
    I was only coming up with an idea to solve the problem of a dirt infield FOR THIS SEASON, not for the long term . So you don’t like my idea? That’s fine. But that doesn’t make us stupid. Where are YOUR solutions?

  • Pridenpoise

    Here’s my solution, they’re MOVING, and what a brilliant idea, you’ve solved the problem for a dirt infield “for this season”, and who’s paying for this, You. It’s simpletons like you that are the reason the Raiders are still playing in the dump, keep extending that lease. And as I said it’s not just about a ” dirt infield, Captain Idiot it’s about the fact they’re playing in a dilapidated dump that was past due 20 years ago.

  • Pridenpoise

    And I was not the one that started with the insults so kiss my ass.

  • raiderjayy209

    Sacramento RAIDERS would blow up.why ain’t anyone talking about that the capital of cali needs a NFL team.and I bet 3/4 of the stadium is filled with fans from sac and the valley

  • Holy Toledo

    Show me the money, Captain. Until then…see you at the “dump.” :-)

  • Holy Toledo

    Who’s going pay for your new stadium fantasy? Your owner is broke. The team hasn’t made the palyoffs since 2002… and you laugh at me, Captain O? :-0

  • Pridenpoise

    Well isn’t that why there in this conundrum the city of Oakland, the politicians don’t want to pay for it, apparently the owner isn’t as “broke” as you think 200 million + 200 million from the league is a nice start for a stadium, I’m also confident that wherever they end up, it’s going to be with the understanding that a new stadium comes along with it. As for seeing me at the dump, yes for 1more season, because if you think they will be their any longer Captain Your also in denial. I’m laughing at you because you think some turf is going to solve everyone’s problems.

  • Sky Langford

    Dear Pridenpoise,

    If I was in a courtroom with you, you and I would have to present evidence for each of our cases would we not? So here it is:

    1. Does Davis have the money to move his team let alone buy land?

    2. Does Davis have the expertise in real estate?

    3. Does Davis have purchased land in L.A

    Now here is my next set of Questions:

    1. Does Kroenke have the money to move his team let alone buy land?

    2.Does Kroenke have the expertise in real estate?

    3. Does Kroenke have purchased land in L.A.

    I will let you do the research Pridenpoise since you KNOW everything, and I will rest my case…………… Enjoy…

  • Sky Langford

    Can you please read it for me Pridenpoise since i am completely illiterate and cannot comprehend anything you say……asshole lol…

  • Sky Langford

    sorry Pridenpoise, don’t mean to pick on you but its actually kinda fun. Oh don’t give me that frown Pridenpoise…. But really, why don’t you ask Mr. Davis yourself if he is willing to shell out 200 million for a stadium let alone to have the balls to ask for 200 mill from the NFL. You do know he is worth only 900 mill if that. I know its alot more than we have but, to an NFL owner, its low on the totum pole. Kroenke is worth 5.6 billion per Forbes. Do the math…As for the NFL shelling out cash to help a poorman’s owner, do you really think the NFL would choose a poor owner over a rich owner to run SoCal fully knowing that they don’t have to help the rich owner? From a business stand point that would make no sense but please try to make sense for me since I am fully incapable of understanding this logic….

  • Sky Langford

    For starters,that is the only evidence you have to support your theory? And I love your english lol. Your white right?

  • Bob Hoffman

    There are two rich areas in NorCal – San Francisco and the South Bay (San Jose/Santa Clara). Somehow, the 49ers have both, while the Raiders have neither. I think the Raiders should try to make the NFL make the 49ers choose – do they want SF or San Jose? The Raiders can take the other.

    As for sharing 49er stadium, great – the NFL should push the 49ers to sell a 50% stake to the Raiders, and half the stadium should be repainted silver and black.

  • hanch56

    I say move them to Toronto, ev3n better send them to London! Hahahaha!

  • Mike Smith

    Davis doesn’t have the capital the make an LA move happen. He doesn’t have enough money to build a stadium himself, the taxpayers in LA refuse to chip in for a stadium, and he only owns 47% of the franchise anyways. Farmers Field? AEG (i.e. Philip Anschultz) has said time and time again that they want a “significant” stake in any franchise that relocates, not only that, but they want to pay below market value for that stake. Mark Davis won’t sell his team and he can’t afford to part with too many more percents of ownership either.

    The only way the Raiders will move to Los Angeles is if another team (Rams) move there first and start construction on their own stadium and agree to share (something Davis has been vehemently against when suggested that he should share Levi’s Stadium with the 49ers.)

    San Antonio is one of the biggest cities in the US without an NFL franchise (excluding Los Angeles) Texas is football rabid and the Alamodome is only about $60 million away from being “up to NFL standards” They’re getting that money anyways due to an NCAA Final Four bid. The economy in Texas is booming and Davis will have no problem getting a new stadium out of Bexar County tax payers.

    San Antonio alone has the 36th largest media market, but when you add Austin and Corpus Christi (which would be in their market) they would jump up to 13th, behind Phoenix and ahead of Seattle.

    Not to mention that Davis needs money so that he can pay the inheritance tax when his mother dies, he can make that money easily in San Antonio where he won’t have to pay exuberant California taxes.

    It looks like a win-win for Davis and San Antonio, plus, he’ll likely be able to finally shed that thug/gang culture that attaches itself to the Silver and Black and make them a family friendly franchise in the process.

  • Ray

    He would have to sell the team and he isn’t going to do that. L.A. already ruined the Raiders once. Oakland Raiders.

  • Ray

    Davis has already said he can spend 400 mil. on a new stadium but that is all the money he has. Only covers about 40% of cost.

  • Pridenpoise

    The only asshole is you, some fuckhead that thinks because the Lambs have some cash that immediately gives them the upper hand in the Move to L.A. I will try and explain it to you as simply as I can seeing as you’re a fucking moron, do you not think the city of L.A would be more than welcome to build a stadium for the Raiders, they certainly would, you talk like Kronke is the only one capable of purchasing land in L.A. Mark Davis has already made it clear how much money he has, and yes weather you like it or not the NFL kicks in 200 million, so let’s not rewrite history jackass. I can guarantee you if the city of Oakland does not build a new stadium, the Raiders will be in L.A. They will be in the city long before the lambs, another thing the L.A wants the Raiders back not the Lambs, and who could blame them, their fans are idiots you’re living proof. And yes I am white, what colour are you yellow?

  • Pridenpoise

    Your incapable of understanding a lot, and I’m not going to waste my time on some asshole that lives in his mommys basement, go worry about the lambs, a team nobody gives two shits about, kind of like your life story.

  • Sky Langford

    Im a moron, im a fuckhead, im an asshole, im a jackass, and im an idiot. Sounds like that sums me up really good. I’ll take it for 500 and I still love you. Hey at least you didn’t call me a donkey. Ok ok, call me a donkey whatever lol. But really…..it wouldn’t matter what team wanted to come to L.A. It could be the toronto arganauts. If you have money your in. If you have bought land, your in. Lets flip the shoe or rewrite history shall we… If it was davis who was worth 5.6 billion and had bought land in L.A., and if it was kroenke who was worth only 900 mil and complaining that his stadium sucked and he wanted to move, don’t you think I would apply the same logic? Ok, If you wanted to move Pridenpoise, what is the first thing you would do? Look for a house right? Maybe buy land so you can build a house right? And you need MONEY to A. buy land B. buy a house/rent C. rental truck or movers. So lets now apply the same logic to moving a franchise regardless of what/who it is. I know I know, its a little different because now were dealing with billions of dollars, but really the logic isn’t all that hard to figure out. Honestly, just because i am a Lambs fan doesn’t mean I am bias or one sided. As you can see now, I would have applied the same logic to the Raiders and Davis had they been the ones with the 5.6 billion and have already purchased the land. So there lol! and I am actually orange if you were ever so interested and I come from the planet neptar….

  • Sky Langford

    Fair game . Did not know. I did look it up and you are absolutley correct Ray so both me and Pridenpoise were off target. And yes, it will only cover 40 percent of the cost. So the question is, who picks up the rest. Im actually wondering if someone from silicon valley might get involved…..

  • Sky Langford

    excellent read Mike. You hit any and every target possible. And it is true about that hefty inheritance tax that he will have to pay. Along with that, California’s taxes are exuberant to say the least lol. It sucks down here

  • Sky Langford

    Yeah I kinda am. Actually the basement I live in is pretty comfy to say the least but I will agree with you on one point you did bring up. Nobody in St louis gives two shits about the Lambs and it has been a known fact for years. Even the players of the St louis Cardinals who were bragging at my poor dodgers last year in the playoffs about how St louis is a true baseball city and only a baseball city. Well, they are right in every aspect. The rams rank in the bottom 4 in the league in attendance and have for several years. This year will be very interesting for both the Lambs and Raiders. The NFL will be watching their attendance very closely. Also, another interesting point might be this problem in Ferguson MO as it will leave a black eye on the city….Sorry for the pun

  • South Texas Raiders

    Yeah one minority owner for the Spurs speaks up about not wanting the Raiders competing in Spurland, and everyone in Cali thinks it’s a deal breaker. When the rest of the Spurs owners would like the Raiders in town. Still can’t see how the Raiders don’t move to Texas. They are the redheaded step child in the NFL, amongst the owners. They will never have a better deal than owning and operating the AlamoDome, that would be gifted to them. Then public funds will build a new stadium in 2-3 years somewhere along the Union Pacific track that Austin and San Antonio have agreed with the railroad to hand over for mass-trans. Projections show 8 million people in south-central Texas by 2035.

  • mdraidernation

    Thanks for telling us absolutely nothing more than we already knew. Regurgitation journalism at its finest.

  • nationraiderslife4

    *you’re.
    “you ARE white right?”

  • Sky Langford

    Oh jeez I knew a typo would get me in trouble. Ok fine, you win, but no I am not white, I am orange…..so there lol!

  • nationsaraiders

    you need to learn how to construct sentences because your grammar is horrible.

  • Sky Langford

    I completely agree with you. As a matter of fact, I recieved an F in every one of my english classes, and that my friend is why I am going to learn chinese….since I cannot speak proper english …..

  • Holy Toledo

    Pride, did you notice the turf problems at Levi’s? I bet Jed York wished he installed synthetic grass :-)

  • Holy Toledo

    Sky, I hear the davis family owns 47% of the Raiders. Per Forbes, the team is worth roughly $970M…So, $970M x 47% =$456M (not including other investments)

  • Holy Toledo

    Pridenpoise, you laughed at me for my artificial turf. But if things aren’t corrected at Levi stadium soon, they will be considering this route. And when the Raiders throw in the towel and join the 49ers in Santa Clara, they will be forced to rip out the grass. And when they do, I’ll be the one laughing.

  • Clintonian

    Maybe his grammar, but his grandma is fine. I checked her out.

  • Holy Toledo

    Pride, they just ripped up turf #2 in Santa Clara. Two games in and they are on their third playing surface. Ha! Pride, where are you??

  • Oaktown Fan

    Oakland does not need to build the Raiders a new stadium. An NFL team plays 8 home games a year, which is not enough to justify placing a billion dollar burden on the City of Oakland. Oakland should spend the money on an Athletics stadium. The A’s are the more important team of the two, and despite not winning a title in 25 years, they have consistently been a .500+ team if not a playoff contender each year. With a guaranteed 81 home games a season, Oakland serves to make a much higher return on investment by building a new A’s park.

    tl;dr Leave O.co for the Raiders and build a dedicated stadium for the A’s.

  • TexasOiler

    Actually, the Spurs said they wouldn’t stand in the Raiders way in moving to San Antonio.

  • TexasOiler

    Davis would be a fool to turn his back on his CA fan base? Like the Oilers were fools to turn their back on their Texas fan base, like the Colts were fools to turn their back on their Baltimore fan base, like the Rams were fools to turn their backs on their California fan base, ect, ect.. The Raiders will be fine in South Texas and will have more fans than they’ll know what to do with, Oh, and a team in Texas will NEVER have to tarp off seats to lift blackouts.

  • TexasOiler

    Well said.