And before you ask what this has to do with finance, stop and think about how much money NFL football generates both directly and indirectly. I have seen statistics putting the total impact of the NFL in the $15 to $20 billion range.
Football is a business and nowhere is that more obvious than with the Dallas Cowboys. Purchased by Jerry Jones in 1989 for $140 million, the Cowboys franchise is now worth an estimated $4.2 billion. It’s the most valuable sports franchise in the world.
Part of that immense value includes AT&T Stadium. Built in 2009, the Cowboys’ home stadium garners more discussion than any other facility in the league. From the massive television screen that spans the space between the 20 yard-lines, to the retractable roof, to the giant windows on the western end, to the art work throughout, there is never a shortfall of conversation when it comes to the stadium.
But everything Cowboys is not always positive, even among the team’s biggest fans. And this is especially the case when it comes to stadium talk.
Listen to this podcast, Cowboys Suck at Home, from Bob Sturm, co-host of BaD Radio on Sportsradio 1310 The Ticket KTCK-AM in Dallas, Texas.
As an aside, The Ticket is my favorite radio station. And now that I’m no longer living in Dallas, I listen to the online stream. The format is less like a pure sports station and more like sitting in a Dallas bar talking with a few of your buddies while watching a game. It’s been the top-rated station in Dallas for going on twenty years now. If you like sports and especially if you’re a fan of Dallas area teams, give it a listen.
In the podcast, Bob goes through some interesting statistics discussing how since the new stadium opened in 2009, the Dallas Cowboys are a top 5 team on the road and one of the worst teams in the league while playing at their home stadium.
I’m not sure exactly why that’s the case. It’s an interesting discussion and there are plenty of explanations. But my real take-away is that because football is a business, decisions are made not based on how competitive the team will be, but on how much money the team can generate.
So while the Cowboys may have one of the nicest stadiums in the NFL, it doesn’t appear that the stadium provides a competitive advantage. And in fact, it appears to be just the opposite.
Something to think about while watching the Cowboys play the Chicago Bears later today.
Readers, sound off on your favorite NFL team. Any predictions for this football season?