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fordfixer
08-27-2008, 10:15 PM
NFL tells Rooneys it wants Dan to be in control
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
By Ed Bouchette, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/08240/907193-66.stm

NEW YORK -- NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell spoke loud and clear yesterday to those Rooney brothers who might want to sell the Steelers to outside interests: The league and its owners will do everything in their power to keep Dan Rooney and his son in control of the franchise.

"There's great respect for the Rooney family in the National Football League,'' Mr. Goodell said after a 21/2 --hour meeting with the five Rooney brothers, "and we want to do everything we can to ensure that the Steelers continue to be operated by the Rooneys and the way they've been operated."

Four brothers have two offers to sell their combined 64 percent interest in the Steelers -- one from New York billionaire Stanley Druckenmiller and one from their brother, team chairman Dan Rooney and his son Art Rooney II, who is president of the club and also attended yesterday's meeting. Although no details of the offers have surfaced, it has been assumed that Mr. Druckenmiller's offer is higher or else the brothers would have accepted Dan Rooney's bid already.

What they should not assume, Mr. Goodell intimated yesterday, is that if they accept a higher offer than Dan Rooney's that the NFL owners will approve it.

"I think there was a genuine commitment on behalf of everybody to get this resolved in a satisfactory manner,'' said Mr. Goodell, characterizing the meeting at NFL headquarters on Park Avenue. "But we were very clear too that this issue is subject to a three-fourths vote of the ownership, as any ownership transfer is, and that's something that is very important to the league and we will make sure our league interests are respected," adding that he thinks the Rooneys understand that.

To help make that point, perhaps, Mr. Goodell invited three other owners to sit in on his meeting with the Rooney brothers. They were Tom Benson of the New Orleans Saints who is chairman of the NFL's finance committee, as well as Jerry Richardson of the Carolina Panthers and Mike Brown of the Cincinnati Bengals.

It would take only nine of the 32 NFL owners to scuttle any bid to buy the Steelers, and Mr. Goodell made the point in his first prolonged comments about the Pittsburgh franchise situation that the NFL is not interested in anyone other than a Rooney in control.

"They've run a model franchise and I think everyone in Pittsburgh recognizes how proud they are of the Steelers, and we in the NFL recognize how fortunate we've been to have Dan Rooney's leadership and now Art's leadership,'' Mr. Goodell said. "That is certainly a consideration and the ownership wants to make sure this team is run consistently with those principles, and that if Dan Rooney wants an opportunity to continue to run the franchise, I think that's an interest some owners have."

None of the Rooney brothers could be reached for comment after the meeting and Mr. Goodell said that they all agreed he would be the spokesman on their behalf.

Dan Rooney's four younger brothers are Tim, Art and twins Pat and John. Only Art, who still lives in Pittsburgh, worked for the Steelers as an adult before Dan fired him as the team's head of player personnel in 1986. Tim has run Yonkers harness racetrack and Pat and John have run other tracks owned jointly by the family, which now includes only the Palm Beach Kennel Club dog track in Florida besides Yonkers.

The issue of selling the Steelers has arisen now for several reasons. Two of them were prompted by the NFL, which prohibits its owners being involved in casino gambling and requires any owner in control of a franchise to own at least 30 percent of the team. The Rooneys have been in violation of both because their two tracks have added casino-style gambling in recent years and because no one owns 30 percent of the Steelers -- each brother owns 16 percent and the remaining 20 percent is split among the McGinley family of Pittsburgh.

Those issues could have been satisfied simply by the brothers selling their racetrack interests and one of them selling to Dan so he could own 30 percent.

However, some or all of the four see it as time to sell their interests in the Steelers for estate reasons.

Dan Rooney made his offer to them and, brother Art Rooney Jr. said, they wanted a second opinion and asked Mr. Druckenmiller, a lifelong Steelers fan, for a bid. That is where they stand today.

One family source related to the four brothers said they came away from yesterday's meeting optimistic that everything will work out. The source said the NFL also wants Dan Rooney to reveal who his potential investors are. Dan and Art Rooney II have solicited minority investors for their offer to the brothers, none of whom has surfaced publicly.

Mr. Goodell said he hopes the deal could be wrapped up by the end of the year. Though he has placed no deadline on an ownership resolution, he is pushing for it to come sooner rather than later.

"We are, only because the issue has just become more complex and problematic,'' Mr. Goodell said. "I think they're just as motivated to get this done within a certain time frame as we are.

"We just think it's in the best interests to have this resolved in a way that will allow people to focus on Steelers football.

"It becomes more complex as families expand, as generations get older and the financial consequences become more significant. So I think when you combine all of that, these issues don't tend to get easier, they get a bit more difficult."

The family source said the four brothers made their case that they don't want to sell to the highest bidder but want to try to get a good deal.

"I think that it's clear we had an update on where they are with respect to any proposed transactions,'' Mr. Goodell said about the four brothers, "and we have a better understanding on that.

"And they have a better understanding on where we sit.''

Clearly, that's to sell to Dan and his son, Art.

"I can't think of many owners who have a greater respect than Dan Rooney within our membership, for what he's accomplished both in Pittsburgh with the Steelers, with that community, and also at the league level,'' Mr. Goodell said. "He's been involved in critical things on the league level. He's had a tremendous influence on the game of football. He's in the Hall of Fame for a reason."
Ed Bouchette can be reached at ebouchette@post-gazette.com.

NKySteeler
08-27-2008, 10:26 PM
Of course you want Dan in control.... This isn't Dallas, nor the Mavericks (sorry Mr. Cuban)...... Dan has been involved in the NFL since the merger of AFL and NFL.... He has done a helluva job with this team and should be in control....

fordfixer
08-27-2008, 10:30 PM
Of course you want Dan in control.... This isn't Dallas, nor the Mavericks (sorry Mr. Cuban)...... Dan has been involved in the NFL since the merger of AFL and NFL.... He has done a helluva job with this team and should be in control....

Sounds as if the other owners won't approve any deal where Dan's not in control

NKySteeler
08-27-2008, 10:37 PM
Sounds as if the other owners won't approve any deal where Dan's not in control

I don't buy it, but I hope this is the case.... He does have "cred" amongst the owners...

fordfixer
08-27-2008, 10:43 PM
Sounds as if the other owners won't approve any deal where Dan's not in control

I don't buy it, but I hope this is the case.... He does have "cred" amongst the owners...


It would take only nine of the 32 NFL owners to scuttle any bid to buy the Steelers, and Mr. Goodell made the point in his first prolonged comments about the Pittsburgh franchise situation that the NFL is not interested in anyone other than a Rooney in control.
how else can you take that other than maybe Art ii being in control?

NKySteeler
08-27-2008, 10:47 PM
It would take only nine of the 32 NFL owners to scuttle any bid to buy the Steelers, and Mr. Goodell made the point in his first prolonged comments about the Pittsburgh franchise situation that the NFL is not interested in anyone other than a Rooney in control.
how else can you take that other than maybe Art ii being in control?

Well, I hope it's not Art...... I want Dan............................ :lol:

But the above statement doesn't preclude the sale to SD, other than the owners MAY not like it...

fordfixer
08-27-2008, 10:52 PM
It would take only nine of the 32 NFL owners to scuttle any bid to buy the Steelers, and Mr. Goodell made the point in his first prolonged comments about the Pittsburgh franchise situation that the NFL is not interested in anyone other than a Rooney in control.
how else can you take that other than maybe Art ii being in control?

Well, I hope it's not Art...... I want Dan............................ :lol:

But the above statement doesn't preclude the sale to SD, other than the owners MAY not like it...

That's true I don't mind SD getting part as long as Dan has more :tt1

NKySteeler
08-27-2008, 10:55 PM
That's true I don't mind SD getting part as long as Dan has more :tt1

I don't want SD having ANY part.... Consider me "old fashioned", but I like it "in house"...

fordfixer
08-27-2008, 11:00 PM
What's wrong with SD? I really don't know any thing about him. Other than he has too much money

Jom112
08-27-2008, 11:05 PM
That's true I don't mind SD getting part as long as Dan has more :tt1

I don't want SD having ANY part.... Consider me "old fashioned", but I like it "in house"...

It might not be a bad thing if SD gets part or majority ownership. Look at it this way:

Scenario 1: Dan Rooney ends up buying majority ownership. He's still 76, do you guys know if he has a succession plan? If it's Art Rooney II taking over do you guys trust him to take the franchise over? Also buying up the majority share probably means money will be a little more tight.

Scenario 2: SD ends up buying majority ownership. He has already stated that he doesn't mind Dan Rooney staying in control for a while longer. Then when SD does eventually take over at least you know that the team will be stable from a financial standpoint. You can hate on people like Steinbrenner, Jerry Jones, Mark Cuban and others but their teams are perennial playoff contenders. As long as SD isn't as eccentric as those other billionaires he might be a good fit for you guys.

If Dan Rooney does have a solid succession plan in place then just ignore my comments...

Starlifter
08-27-2008, 11:06 PM
I don't want to turn this into a political argument but i think it's necessary to point out the issue thats driving this is the estate tax. It's so friggin high that the only way some of the brothers can afford to pay it based on the current value of the steelers is to sell their shares. The tax almost guarantees that parents can't leave valuable items to their children.

NKySteeler
08-27-2008, 11:10 PM
It might not be a bad thing if SD gets part or majority ownership.

Sorry bro, but No. ... At least, that's my opinion... And I'm sure that there is some sort of plan in place... Or would think so.

Steel Life
08-27-2008, 11:15 PM
What this shows is that Dan has earned the respect of his peers, not bought it - yes, I'm looking at you Jerry Jones & Dan Snyder.

NKySteeler
08-27-2008, 11:15 PM
I don't want to turn this into a political argument but i think it's necessary to point out the issue thats driving this is the estate tax. It's so friggin high that the only way some of the brothers can afford to pay it based on the current value of the steelers is to sell their shares. The tax almost guarantees that parents can't leave valuable items to their children.

Sorry brother.... That is really a cop-out.... Do you really think that is what is driving them? They can "pass-down" alot, including part ownership... Yes, estate tax is part of the issue, but not the defining factor... I do not agree with the position that "it's too expensive"... But I do think that they want it NOW, for thier own benefit (not thier children).

fordfixer
08-27-2008, 11:15 PM
That's true I don't mind SD getting part as long as Dan has more :tt1

I don't want SD having ANY part.... Consider me "old fashioned", but I like it "in house"...

It might not be a bad thing if SD gets part or majority ownership. Look at it this way:

Scenario 1: Dan Rooney ends up buying majority ownership. He's still 76, do you guys know if he has a succession plan? If it's Art Rooney II taking over do you guys trust him to take the franchise over? Also buying up the majority share probably means money will be a little more tight.

Scenario 2: SD ends up buying majority ownership. He has already stated that he doesn't mind Dan Rooney staying in control for a while longer. Then when SD does eventually take over at least you know that the team will be stable from a financial standpoint. You can hate on people like Steinbrenner, Jerry Jones, Mark Cuban and others but their teams are perennial playoff contenders. As long as SD isn't as eccentric as those other billionaires he might be a good fit for you guys.

If Dan Rooney does have a solid succession plan in place then just ignore my comments...

Good points I like the idea of more money going to the team but I still want the Rooney's in control

RuthlessBurgher
08-28-2008, 12:11 AM
I don't want to turn this into a political argument but i think it's necessary to point out the issue thats driving this is the estate tax. It's so friggin high that the only way some of the brothers can afford to pay it based on the current value of the steelers is to sell their shares. The tax almost guarantees that parents can't leave valuable items to their children.

Sorry brother.... That is really a cop-out.... Do you really think that is what is driving them? They can "pass-down" alot, including part ownership... Yes, estate tax is part of the issue, but not the defining factor... I do not agree with the position that "it's too expensive"... But I do think that they want it NOW, for thier own benefit (not thier children).

Isn't estate tax on huge amounts like this taxed extraordinarily heavily, like in the neighborhood of 40-45%? So if one of these guys died, and his 16% of the team was passed down to his heirs, wouldn't those kids have to pony up somewhere in the neighborhood of $70 million to Uncle Sam just to keep Dad's shares (assuming the value of the team as a whole is right around a cool billion). I could be way off on this, though (any accountants in the house?)

Jom112
08-28-2008, 10:04 AM
I don't want to turn this into a political argument but i think it's necessary to point out the issue thats driving this is the estate tax. It's so friggin high that the only way some of the brothers can afford to pay it based on the current value of the steelers is to sell their shares. The tax almost guarantees that parents can't leave valuable items to their children.

Sorry brother.... That is really a cop-out.... Do you really think that is what is driving them? They can "pass-down" alot, including part ownership... Yes, estate tax is part of the issue, but not the defining factor... I do not agree with the position that "it's too expensive"... But I do think that they want it NOW, for thier own benefit (not thier children).

Isn't estate tax on huge amounts like this taxed extraordinarily heavily, like in the neighborhood of 40-45%? So if one of these guys died, and his 16% of the team was passed down to his heirs, wouldn't those kids have to pony up somewhere in the neighborhood of $70 million to Uncle Sam just to keep Dad's shares (assuming the value of the team as a whole is right around a cool billion). I could be way off on this, though (any accountants in the house?)

The post-gazette had a good article about the estate tax situation:

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/08223/903229-66.stm

So the estate tax is in the 45% range but it also states that nobody really pays the full 45%. The number is usually around 22%, so if the Steelers are worth say $800 million and one rooney owns 16%, that individual will probably pay around $28 Million. Still a sizable chunk but manageable I would assume.

Of course things could change over the next several years and taxes could go up.


For those who want a little more numerical analysis:

There are "payment plans" the article talked about, one of them was where the taxes would be paid over a 15 year period at a very low interest rate. Lets say for argument one of the brothers children owes $28 Million. The profits from the Steelers brings in about $3.2 Million a year per individual owner ($20 Mil total X 16% ownership = $3.2 Mil). That person would make about $48 Million over 15 years. Subtract those profits from the taxes owed:

$48 Million - ($28 million in taxes + interest (At 4.25% it would be $1.19 Million) = $18.81 Million

A profit of a little over $1 million a year. Taxes going up might be equalized with profits going up due to a new CBA and increasing profits for the NFL. So the numbers shouldn't change too much based on outside factors.

I can kind of see why some of the brothers might want out. Over $1 Million a year would be great for me, but when you get to the Rooney's level I'm sure they have business interest that can generate more profits than that on a yearly basis...

fordfixer
08-28-2008, 02:27 PM
I don't want to turn this into a political argument but i think it's necessary to point out the issue thats driving this is the estate tax. It's so friggin high that the only way some of the brothers can afford to pay it based on the current value of the steelers is to sell their shares. The tax almost guarantees that parents can't leave valuable items to their children.

Sorry brother.... That is really a cop-out.... Do you really think that is what is driving them? They can "pass-down" alot, including part ownership... Yes, estate tax is part of the issue, but not the defining factor... I do not agree with the position that "it's too expensive"... But I do think that they want it NOW, for thier own benefit (not thier children).

Isn't estate tax on huge amounts like this taxed extraordinarily heavily, like in the neighborhood of 40-45%? So if one of these guys died, and his 16% of the team was passed down to his heirs, wouldn't those kids have to pony up somewhere in the neighborhood of $70 million to Uncle Sam just to keep Dad's shares (assuming the value of the team as a whole is right around a cool billion). I could be way off on this, though (any accountants in the house?)

The post-gazette had a good article about the estate tax situation:

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/08223/903229-66.stm

So the estate tax is in the 45% range but it also states that nobody really pays the full 45%. The number is usually around 22%, so if the Steelers are worth say $800 million and one rooney owns 16%, that individual will probably pay around $28 Million. Still a sizable chunk but manageable I would assume.

Of course things could change over the next several years and taxes could go up.


For those who want a little more numerical analysis:

There are "payment plans" the article talked about, one of them was where the taxes would be paid over a 15 year period at a very low interest rate. Lets say for argument one of the brothers children owes $28 Million. The profits from the Steelers brings in about $3.2 Million a year per individual owner ($20 Mil total X 16% ownership = $3.2 Mil). That person would make about $48 Million over 15 years. Subtract those profits from the taxes owed:

$48 Million - ($28 million in taxes + interest (At 4.25% it would be $1.19 Million) = $18.81 Million

A profit of a little over $1 million a year. Taxes going up might be equalized with profits going up due to a new CBA and increasing profits for the NFL. So the numbers shouldn't change too much based on outside factors.

I can kind of see why some of the brothers might want out. Over $1 Million a year would be great for me, but when you get to the Rooney's level I'm sure they have business interest that can generate more profits than that on a yearly basis...

Could you say that again you lost me at "The post-gazette" :lol:

RuthlessBurgher
08-28-2008, 03:13 PM
I can kind of see why some of the brothers might want out. Over $1 Million a year would be great for me, but when you get to the Rooney's level I'm sure they have business interest that can generate more profits than that on a yearly basis...

The yearly profit is only a small portion of the overall value. It seems like the the market value of an NFL team doubles every decade of so. We know that Steelers were started with a couple thousand bucks back in the 30's and are now worth nearly a billion, but it isn't just the guys that have had teams in their families for generations that have seen their investments grow remarkably well. Jerry Jones bought the Cowboys less than 20 years ago for $150 million, and they are now worth over a billion. I don't know how much longer this can go on, but there aren't many investments out there these days that keep rolling over like that.

Shawn
08-28-2008, 03:33 PM
Good news...and I think we have a little more insight into why Dan and Co. always did so much butt kissing and things that didn't always make sense...ie the whole Pat videogate stuff. They were investing politically knowing this day would come. They are cashing in all their political favors and will likely retain control of the Steelers.

NKySteeler
08-28-2008, 03:35 PM
They are cashing in all their political favors and will likely retain control of the Steelers.

...I hope you're right... But I don't think this is anywhere near settled yet.

costanza2k1
08-28-2008, 07:26 PM
Big Dan's comments:

[youtube:3k6d5cl8]x_j3oFGipcM[/youtube:3k6d5cl8]

NKySteeler
08-28-2008, 07:29 PM
Thank you very very very much, stanza...........

Eddie Spaghetti
08-28-2008, 07:30 PM
Good news...and I think we have a little more insight into why Dan and Co. always did so much butt kissing and things that didn't always make sense...ie the whole Pat videogate stuff. They were investing politically knowing this day would come. They are cashing in all their political favors and will likely retain control of the Steelers.


do you actually believe this?

dan is 76.

why do you people have so much faith in art2 to make the sound financial decisions to keep this team competetive in a small market? careful what you wish for.

SD alleviates that concern.

NKySteeler
08-28-2008, 07:44 PM
why do you people have so much faith in art2 to make the sound financial decisions to keep this team competetive in a small market? careful what you wish for.

SD alleviates that concern.

Why do you think an unknown commodity would keep the best interests and values of this team going as they have? What experience does he have with the other current owners, or even the NFL for that matter? How is your concern alleviated with SD?..... SD doesn't "alleviate" anything, in fact, just the opposite. He has no history so it's an unknown and a concern. Hell, he could end up as another Snyder or Bidwell.... From your 18 comments on this board I can only assume you are from the younger generation and have no clue as to what Dan and the Rooneys have done within the NFL and this team as far as history goes. If I am wrong I apologize completely, maybe you simply want a change within this organization for whatever reason, if so then so be it.... But you are not presenting a valid argument... Give me some reasons to think your way....

Eddie Spaghetti
08-28-2008, 07:53 PM
you're wrong.

what makes you think art2 is hall of fame material?

if dan has to mortgage the interest and future of the franchise just so he can give it to his son, I am not in favor of that. i am a fan of the pittsburgh steelers. not the pittsburgh rooneys.

dan cannot run the team forever.

NKySteeler
08-28-2008, 08:02 PM
Yes, I may be wrong...

... But Dan Rooney has continued what Art Sr. started. And there has been no indication that things will go downhill.... Your assumptions are just that.... Assumptions.

... Give me definitive facts to support your claims if you want me to take it seriously....

Eddie Spaghetti
08-28-2008, 08:21 PM
you're wrong about how old i am brah. you are certainly entitled to your own opinions and assumptions.

SD has a bigger checkbook. that is a fact.

teams are always looking for new revenue streams. that is a fact.

the steelers are limited as a small market club. that is a fact.

a cash strapped steelers team will struggle in todays NFL. that is a fact.

NKySteeler
08-28-2008, 08:26 PM
you're wrong about how old i am brah. you are certainly entitled to your own opinions and assumptions.

SD has a bigger checkbook. that is a fact.

teams are always looking for new revenue streams. that is a fact.

the steelers are limited as a small market club. that is a fact.

a cash strapped steelers team will struggle in todays NFL. that is a fact.

... With the exception of the checkbook of SD, I disagree.... But that's what a message board is all about.... The other items do not mean that the Rooneys would be an inferior owner..... They have prospered in the same "small market" for how many years?

Eddie Spaghetti
08-28-2008, 08:36 PM
art2 has no track record.

SD has conquered wall st. he must be able to tie his shoes, right?

i see the cap going up. a cash strapped owner is in big trouble.

the times they are a changing.

BURGH86STEEL
08-28-2008, 09:13 PM
you're wrong about how old i am brah. you are certainly entitled to your own opinions and assumptions.

SD has a bigger checkbook. that is a fact.

teams are always looking for new revenue streams. that is a fact.

the steelers are limited as a small market club. that is a fact.

a cash strapped steelers team will struggle in todays NFL. that is a fact.

I do not think they will stuggle if the NFL continues revenue sharing. Not only that but they do not rely on big money FA's to build solid teams. Steelers are mostly about building through the draft. That is one of the biggest keys to their success. They have a plan and they stick to it through thick and thin. Apparently it works.