Thursday, January 06, 2011

My talk with Jerry Richardson

Jerry Richardson called Thursday to apologize.

“It was not my intention to be rude, or disrespectful, or not answer questions,” he said.

He was referring to his uncomfortable-to-watch news conference back on Tuesday. But the Panthers’ owner ended up talking about a lot more – including a new direction for the team, and how he plans to reach out more to fans.

I had a column in Thursday’s paper saying that in the news conference, Richardson came off as “irritable, cheap, confused, obstinate and a bit of a bully.” He called to respond. He wasn’t mad. We ended up talking three separate times – he had to hang up twice to take calls from other NFL owners (Jerry Jones in Dallas and Robert Kraft in New England).

All of this happened a couple hours before Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck – the Panthers’ likely choice with the no. 1 pick in the draft – announced he’s staying in school. I’m not sure Richardson would’ve been so calm then.

He’s planning to change the Panthers’ philosophy. For years the team leaned on a tough defense. But now he says the NFL is so offense-oriented that offensive coordinators and quarterback coaches are nearly as important as head coaches. Richardson said the Panthers will hire a new head coach first, but then go hard at offensive assistants. And no matter the coaches, he says the Panthers are going to open up.

“The NFL has changed, in the last five years, dramatically,” he said. “We would be foolish not to stay in sync with that… We didn’t score enough points. First thing, they (fans) want us to win. But after that, they want us to score points and they want excitement.”

I asked Richardson if he heard from fans after the news conference. This was his answer: “I had 11 e-mails this morning, and 10 were glowing.”

(Clearly his e-mail address is not well-publicized. Either that or he’s got an extremely effective Glow Filter.)

He said he understands fans are frustrated with the Panthers’ 2-14 season: “When they drive up here from Wilmington and Georgetown and Myrtle Beach (and the Panthers lose), that’s a long ride home.”

But he also said fans should take a longer view.

“We’ve only been in (the NFL) a short while,” he said. “We haven’t been in the league 75 years like the Pittsburgh Steelers. Our fan base is young. They don’t know the up-and-down cycles.”

Fans also complained about ticket prices. The Panthers won’t raise prices next season, but last season prices went up between $1 and $9 per seat. It was the team’s eighth price hike in 11 years.

“They’re ticked off about the ticket price,” Richardson said. “The ticket price increase was so modest, it surprised me.”

I mentioned in the column Thursday that we get our hair cut at the same place. Richardson compared the ticket hike to the hairspray he buys when he gets his trim. For years it was $10 a can. Now it’s $12. He doesn’t like it, but he understands the cost of business.

Two years ago, in a business decision, Richardson fired his sons, Jon and Mark. I asked him about that as part of a question about general turnover with the Panthers.

“Sometimes it’s difficult for families to operate well in business together,” he said. “I have other partners. I can’t run the business the way I’d run it if it was a father-and-son business.”

Richardson said that, despite last season, he thinks the Panthers are in “an exceptional place.” He listed a dozen of the Panthers’ “good young players,” and said other teams constantly call him trying to get them in trades. He’s got the first pick in the draft (even if it’s not Andrew Luck). He’s got a new head coach coming. And he says he’s got a lot of energy, despite a heart transplant not quite two years ago.

He sounded a lot sharper on the telephone than he did on the microphone a couple days ago. He also sounded sincere in his apology – although it’s clearly a smart thing to do when your image takes a hit.

At the end, we were talking about communicating with fans, and he asked me for suggestions. I didn’t have anything brilliant, but I said it might be good to have a news conference more often than every nine years.

He says it’s not his style to step out in public, but he knows he needs to let fans know what he’s thinking and what the team is up to.

We talked about being a sports fan, and how upset you get when your team’s going bad.

“That’s good!” he said – the point being, at least they care. And then he added this:

“I can tell you… I will care.”

134 comments:

Anonymous said...

The stuff about the NFL changing is crazy accurate.

I honestly don't believe talked to him. How would that not come up at the press conference? It's what people were hoping they would hear.

Anonymous said...

Good work Tommy!

Teresa said...

Good report Tommy....

Anonymous said...

Bruce H. Topol, OD

Anonymous said...

First poster- don't be so dense.
Tommy talked to JR today, not before the press conference.
Tommy, I thought your column was spot on. Clearly Jerry did too

carolinaz3 said...

Tommy, tell Richardson to hold small forums with the PSL holders on a regular basis and ask us directly our opinion on things. I fill out the electronic questionaire's when I receive them but would like an opportunity to tell him in person. Even if it's another drive from DC to be there in person like I do for the home games. I thought he handled himself extremely poorly at the first press conference in nine years and he should've been better prepared.

Anonymous said...

Your the best!!!!

Anonymous said...

So you are going to change you philosphy and try to score points. But your only known head coaching candidates are all D.C.'s. This franchise is a schizoid mess.

Anonymous said...

If he sounded intelligent I doubt it was actually Jerry. Unless you have a speaker phone I call bullsheet.

Anonymous said...

Great report - way to call JR out. The guy is clearly not sharp anymore. Luck or no luck we need a proven offensive minded coach (not the 4 guys being mentioned). It takes money to win and JR doesn't want to spend to make it happen.

Anonymous said...

Well, at least it's sounds like he has been doing some thinking about improving. Just an odd way to go about it. Kind of a save one year, spend later mentality. It's all good when you are spending.

Anonymous said...

My season ticket went up 9 bucks on a 91 dollar seat - not "modest" when JR is complaining about 2 bucks. He's lost touch with the fans and what it takes to win. He should wait another 9 years to talk if this is the crap he is going to say. It pisses fans off even more than not talking.

Archiguy said...

The first clue that Jerry doesn't love us as much as we love him (or rather, love having a pro football team) was when he made the very early decision to name it after a two state region rather than the city it would play in and which would supply the great majority of its fan base. That was a direct dis to Charlotte and an indication of how little he actually cares about the fans here.

There was no increase in attendance derived from that perplexing decision, no new legions of South Carolinians and eastern North Carolinians clamoring for tickets. No advantage whatsoever. Just a big, honkin' dis to the city and fans that made it possible for him to join the rarified world of NFL owners.

I've never forgiven him for it and I know a lot of fans who feel the same way.

Anonymous said...

Hey, Jerry: My ticket prices almost DOUBLED between the end of the 2003-2004 (Super Bowl) season and this past season -- they went from $43 per ticket to $83 per ticket in just seven years. That's a 93% increase, or roughly 13% per year. You call that MODEST?

I call it BS.

Anonymous said...

Tommy Tomlinson is nothing but a mean spirited bully who pushes his weight around when its convenient picking his fights.

Way to go butch. Picking on a guy who has always been held to utmost highest esteem and class who BTW just had a major heart transplant and lucky to be alive.

Swell guy you are.

Anonymous said...

Tommy, I liked your columns and the articles you write for Our State but I will agree with another poster here that you were rather mean spirited in what you wrote about Jerry. I'm impressed that he called you but he is a real gentleman and I personally think you should be the one apologizing.

tommy tomlinson said...

Anon 6:12, when I call someone out, my name's right there. Feel free to add yours.

Anon 6:20... thanks for your thoughtful comment. Today, he was a gentleman. At the news conference, I'd say he was something different. We're all like that, of course, depending on the day. I think what made that moment stand out was that it was the first time in nine years he'd spoken to the public in that setting. So there was a lot of weight in what he said there. I think he understands that.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Richardson, a $2 hike in your hairspray isn't a big deal when you have money to pay your bills.

Anonymous said...

Looks like Jerry's comments about Harbaugh, the CBA pie chart and his overall weird press conference may have cost of Andrew Luck

Anonymous said...

The mystery is solved. The 2 phone calls from Jerry Jones and Robert Kraft. JR has gotten such a big head from owners like them that he's absolutely lost his way. JR you are NO NE Patriot or Dallas Cowboy. When you loose your fan base, you will loose your franchise. Just wait til it comes time to renew the PSL's this year and see how many just turn them back in.

Anonymous said...

Well, he can forget about offense now.

Maybe the next time you want Harbaugh's QB, you'll keep your freaking mouth shut instead of disrespecting the man.

Jim Harbaugh PLAYED one season for Carolina, though he never got in a game. He was still on the roster.

For Jerry Richardson to not MENTION THAT, and instead say, disrespectfully, that he's sure he's a nice man but he doesn't "KNOW WHO HE IS", what just senile, and stupid.

Thanks for killing any chance of trying to sell this organization to Luck, you old fool.

Anonymous said...

And here we have Archiguy in a bitter rant because the Panthers -- locating in one of the smaller NFL cities -- tried to reach out to fans across the Carolinas.

I really do not have the words to express what I think of that ignorant, immature, and self-centered comment. I really feel his pain that his enthusiasm for the Panthers is so cramped by the knowledge that Greensboro and Raleigh and even Myrtle Beach have Panther fans too. Truly, this is one of the big issues for true Panther fans. (dripping sarcasm)

Anonymous said...

Archiguy - the reason that the Panthers are the "Carolina" Panthers is that we were competing with other cities to be awarded the franchise and therefore by calling the team the Carolina Panthers they were able to argue a larger trade area and a greater population base. Had they limited the trade area to Charlotte, the team may have been awarded to an other city.

Anonymous said...

to the dude who said he was offended by the name "carolina" as opposed to charlotte, get over yourself. how stupid can you be. if you lived any where else, you would realize it is an inclusive name. i live in greensboro and have psl's and i could care less.

btw- what about minnesota, arizona, new york and new england? i don't see any of their fans losing sleep over their names.

Anonymous said...

I thought your column was 100% right on regarding Jerry Richardson and his apparent lack of concern for what the fans think. My husband and I have been PSL owners since Day 1. I think he needs to remember how he got this team here -- through PSLs. He not only owes his partners a "fair return" -- he owns the PSL owners one as well in fielding a decent team. If anyone sent him an email stating his performance in "glowing terms", it must have come from his family. It certainly wasn't from the PSL owners!!

Marcia said...

I'd like his email..I will be happy to tell him what I think and it won't be "glowing"

Anonymous said...

Too little, too late, Jerry. You have treated me like your personal ATM for the last 15 years. That's how long I've been a season ticket/PSL holder. No more. I'm throwing my hand in, taking my loss on the PSLs, and bagging you and the Panthers. You suck. C Ya.

Anonymous said...

I still remember the promise that Jerry Richardson made to all the brand new Panthers fans when he was first awarded the franchise. He promised that the team would win the Super Bowl within ten years. Anyone else remember that? So this man has a history of fibbing. After that, I've never believed a thing he says. He reminds me of some of my former bosses with egos bigger than BOA stadium who really don't care about the "little people" and just pretend to care. I see through your facade, Mr. Richardson. You care about making money and nothing else.

Anonymous said...

7:04......JR did NOT say he "didn't know who Harbaugh was". Dont make crap up. He said he hadnt thought about him as Head Coach.

Jon said...

Goddamnit, what next? $30 lap dances at Uptown Cabaret after the games?? DAMN!!!!

Cliff said...

He said about Harbaugh, "I'm sure he's a nice man." That came across like he'd never met him. If he had, then he would've been a bit more clear about the fact that he had been with the Panthers.

Does it concern me? Not really. He was a 3rd string QB that never got in the game in a miserable year. I'm willing to bet there are a couple other people that have been on the team at one time or another that he can't name. I can't name everyone in my business.

Cathy said...

He lied because he said we'd be in the Super Bowl in 10 years? IT'S A GOAL YOU DUMBASS! Would you have been more inspired if he had said, "we hope to win a Super Bowl sometime in the next 30 years?" And they actually got within one kick out of bounds of doing it.

That's one of the most insanely idiotic things I've ever read.

Barrington Slate said...

Wow, there are a bunch of DBags on this thread. So much bitching and moaning. I'm sure you all have menial, mindless jobs where you sit around half the day and bitch about the people leading your company. The man's probably always keeping you down. The rich are all soooooo fortunate and are soooooo undeserving. Get over yourself.

Theo said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Barrington Slate said...

Gladly Theo. Done with your complaining?

MCPOAB said...

I'm glad JR called you to clarify some things; the proof will be in the pudding.
If he intends on opening things up and making Panthers football, exciting, that's great; but the proof will be in the pudding.
Reading between the lines, it appears his head coach won't be controlling the offense; that could create some problems. I see why he wants a low key assistant coach for HC. It appears as though JR is taking over the team.
That hasn't worked well for Snyder in DC, I hope it works better here.

OK JR, I'll give you the chance; let's see a better team next year.
Don't be afraid of Free Agents; good FA pickups fill in holes. It takes time to build through the draft; when you only need one or two pieces, use FA.
To open up the offense you will have to open up the pocketbook too.

Theo said...

No. Bite me.

Barrington Slate said...

MCPOAB, only need one or two pieces? At each position?

Jon said...

Seriously, they're not raising the cost of lap dances at Uptown Cabaret, are they?

Theo said...

No, still $20.

Anonymous said...

Good work, Tommy. I am happy to hear Mr. Richardson has apologized. He is a good owner but has suffered a terrible last few years on the field and then he held this peculiarly bumbling press conference, which will be the talk of the town for years to come. After just a few days into the new year, it already seems like we have one of our “Top Stories of 2011” for December’s annual Observer edition. What’s mostly evident to me is how I get the sense that his bobble-headed “yes-men” Marty Hurney and Danny Morrison on his either side are too scared to tell him (a) how to properly conduct a press conference and (b) how bad he screwed up when he blew one. So it takes people like you Tommy, and Rick Bonnell, and sport talk radio hosts and water-cooler whisperers and others to tell Jerry the errors of his ways. But it is encouraging to see that once he gets the message, he is contrite and willing to address it (hint, hint, Hurney and Morrison, you probably won’t be fired if you give good advice that helps him avoid these messes in the future). Good work, Tommy and to all the members of the media who have waited ten years to speak with a man they have dutifully covered for their respective formats.

Anonymous said...

I think too much was made over the Morgan Fogarty bit. I don’t think he was being a bully or sexist or preferential, but just having fun with someone he knew personally. Months ago she and Brotha Fred visited him at the stadium because he is a fan of their show and felt (in jest, I think) that they were abusing him. So this has been going on for a long time. Word was a lot of other sports writers were not so happy that an “infotainment” show like Fox Edge would get such access. I think some of the other reporters were a bit jealous or mad that Jerry didn’t know their first names. Granted, few others in the room were as attractive as Morgan, but still the two were friends from before and had spoken many times before.

Anonymous said...

Brotha Fred is the biggest dbag of them all.

Anonymous said...

Jerry Richardson is runniong this team on the cheap and every person in the NFL knows it.

We're held hostage by this PSL system so it's a lose, lose situation no matter how you look at it.

No free agents of matter, no experienced coaches..... too much to ask to spend there.

HokieTT said...

"He says it’s not his style to step out in public, but he knows he needs to let fans know what he’s thinking and what the team is up to."

The Panthers need to hire someone media-savvy enough to let JR 'speak' to the fans electronically. Twitter, Facebook, email, text...it's common knowledge he read emails and then calls people sometimes...well, he can be a much more 'hands-on' public-faced owner just bu utilizing what the rest of the world is using. The words can still come directly from his mouth/fingers if he wants. Just as the NFL has changed of late, so has communication.ter

Anonymous said...

Sell Jerry Sell!

kosspro4aa said...

...point: Jerry Richardson, his organization and his players are (for the most part) a 'class act.' They reflect his philosophy, and I have no argument with that. Point: gonna honestly miss John Fox, as he genuinely is a "player's coach," but, doggone...when I can change my cat's litter on second down, 'cause I know it's a running play, it's TIME for a CHANGE...last point: it seems that Charlotte's "ego" problem continues (since the late seventies)...just because certain sports writers 'proclaim' a specific college player to be the 'savior' of the franchise, doesn't mean it's going to happen...

Jeremy said...

I have to be honest with everybody. I’ve been terrified beyond the capacity for rational thought over these Blackbird Apocalypse and Arkansas Fish Holocaust things. If just one of them happened, we could chalk it up to some kind of freak occurrence. Some freakish weather phenomenon or an accidental chemical spill or something. But both of them happening at the same time? That spells trouble to me. Big trouble. The kind of trouble where you can use the Book of Revelations as a handy reference guide. Or the kind of thing that Mulder and Scully used to get called in for. So ever since these things happened, I haven’t been able to decide whether it was time to get right with God, make a hat out of tinfoil or just start hoarding canned goods & ammo.

Anonymous said...

Jeremy you are on the wrong blog. Take the tinfoil off the head and call it a night

Anonymous said...

Mr Richardson was surprised that fans were ticked off that ticket prices went up ? He's asking people to pay more for watching a losing team. He says that's business, asking more for the same old crap and then criticizes the union for doing the same thing and wants the owners to lock out the players in an effort to break the union. Come on, that's just plain greed, Mr Richardson.

Frank said...

What I’m about to say may shock some people. I don’t play fantasy football. I haven’t for years. Just something about trying to win a couple hundred bucks from my friends when I have thousands riding on the 1′oclock games doesn’t do it for me. In fact I don’t see how anybody who gambles for a living could play fantasy unless it’s super high stakes fantasy or something.

Michael said...

Publish his email address. Tomorrow.

OSC said...

NICE follow-up Tommy!

As an earlier poster said, ask Mr. Richardson to hold small forums with the PSL holders. They are very important to the bulk of the franchise ticket sales, I will not deny that. But perhaps include that the "general admission" fans would also like to know what was discussed among him and the PSL holders. We might may or may not like it, but we like to know what's going on. I know I appreciated his letter to PSL owners admitting fault, even though a large consensus of non-PSL owners attacked him. I like to know what's going on with our team, and even though I don't hold a PSL license, I've been a faithful fan of the team from the beginning and I trust Mr. Richardson's decisions.

Pauly said...

Took the plunge. Dealing with the fall-out. About to secure my freedom from the evil tentacled monster. Takes 12 steps, but I hit a brick wall at 8.

Took time off to recuperate and recover my energy. Now back from paradise, rejuvenated and ready to take on the beast again. All eyes on the prize, one more trip to deliver the coup de grace to that other beast in the west. Once that's done, its just a matter of time and protocol until the next step is reached.

Its scary and new, but isn't that just what makes it all so deliciously exciting?

Wayne H said...

Tommy, I think your call with Mr. Richardson may have been a bit more insightful into the man he happens to be rather than the one who clearly was not prepared for the press conference. For all of the bashing Mr. Richardson has taken (some appropriate and some not), I think people may have lost sight of the man himself and all the good he has and continues to do behind the scenes that very few people have access. I have seen him be a role model for others on how to be a member of at least two non profit/organizations that required a three year commitment each. He was there for the monthly/quarterly meetings, eating rubber chicken and cold peas with the rest of us after already putting in a long day. He was engaged, insightful and helpful. Yet, he clearly could have spent his time elsewhere and had a larger impact financial impact. The reality was he had made a commitment and he stood by it (sound familiar). This involvement did not require him to make financial commitments. His contribution was his time, his expertise, his passion and his intellect. There was no connection to football or the Panthers and their issues. He was just being a good citizen trying to balance running a billion dollar business with sharing of himself and all he has to offer beyond money. After nearly six years of watching him operate in his gentlemanly and courtly manner, I have no doubt his heart (both of them) is with this city, this state and most of all the Panthers. Give the man a break...would you really rather have no NFL team? Or one that can take you from the heights of enjoyment to the depths of sports agony and back again? Could he have been better at his news conference? Absolutely. Has he done as much for this city and its many needs as anyone else? My vote says he is right at the top. Hang in there Mr. Richardson. We need you in so many ways.

Anonymous said...

I'm one of the fans who live in Myrtle Beach and when I'm home I would drive to the games. I'm working in Iraq now and I made it home one time (Bears games). In 15 years of going to games I have never seen a team so ill prepared for a game. I promise you this unless something changes, I will not fly 16 hours and then drive another 4 just to see this product take the field!
k7Roger

Anonymous said...

TT - you're a talented writer....why you still work for the observer is beyond me.



die scott fowler.

Anonymous said...

Jerry the hair spray went up but it is stilll the same product, the crap you sold us this year belongs in the tiolet. You are compareing apples and oranges. Please sell the team and go away.

Anonymous said...

We're going to be more offensive, but the guys we have on a short list for head coach are defensive.

"Do I contradict myself? Very well, I contradict myself. I am large. I contain multitudes." - whitman

- @jmitchem

Anonymous said...

You can't compare the price increase for a can of hairspray to Panther NFL season tickets. Clearly, the hairspray has remained a quality product, the Panther's have not.

JMoore said...

Good report, Tommy. You're an ambassador for the fans and it looks like you had a good week; keep on him!

Anonymous said...

Richardson is a moron!!! He has a press conference that is super negative about the CBA before Luck makes his decision. Would you come out to work for an old coot! I think not.

Anonymous said...

Poor vagabond. Just cant resist using that proletariat Marxist media bully pulpit to bring the hated elite bourgouise to their knees in extortionism in order to keep that perpetual class warfare flame ignited and burning hot ?

Where are the good ole goth ages where the good Kings horsemen would thrust these zealot peasant scoudrels on the wagon for a trip to the castles torture chambers or guillotine to solve the problems of the world.

Anonymous said...

No top shelf coaches, no free agent signings, no high dollar players.

Yes Jerry you've changed the philosophy all right. A spend no money additude that has us sitting at 32 out of 32 teams in the NFL.

And I assume this is considered a "glowing" post?

Unbelievable.

Larry said...

I've always had a thing against Landon Donovan. The tag of "best US soccer player of his generation" rang a bit hollow when you looked at what he's achieved on a global scale. His two aborted attempts at Bayer Leverkusen in Germany really frustrated me.

Anonymous said...

Hey Archiguy! You made a silly comment. You ever heard of the
Minnesota Vikings,New England Patriots,Arizona Cardinals,Florida Marlins,Colorado Rockies, Texas Rangers,Carolina Hurricanes
Golden State Warrioirs,Minnesota Twins, Minnesota Timberwolves
New Jersey Nets,Arizona Diamondbacks? These teams represent States and Regions. Had the Bobcats named their team Carolina they might have more fannies in the seats.

Theo said...

Hey Larry, wrong football you bonehead.

Anonymous said...

8:52AM

Tis brutal indeed. The oppressed become the oppressor.

James said...

Wayne H, I understand sum of your parts of you're response. But we might just have to disagree to agree as they say. You act if Mr. Jerry is a savyour for are city and he is giving to all are charitees every day. I for example have not gotten charity from Mr. Jerry and I think its time he start giving back too all citisens of charlotte by making up for the bad doings of the team. I have few ideas of what he shuwd do.

1) give the people that have not ever been to a game the chance to go to a game. at least one game per year should be given free to peeple of charlotte that dont have seasoned tickets.

2) players shuwd be forced to donate 20% of paycheck to local charitees.

3) ticket prices shuwd be based on yur salary so that all the fat cats in charlotte will pay more and make it so us little people can afford tikets

4) once the team is out of play offs the tickets shuwd be givven out to who ever wants them for free since there is no reason too go to games any more

This 3 prong approach wood broden the fan base of the Panthers by getting more people to be able to go to a game and by putting more money in the pocket of the little man so he can buy the food at the game. Sum may say these approaches are 5 1 have dozen as they say but i think it will make the difference to get the team on the write track.

SgtRock said...

He has tried to win a Super Bowl and is still trying.

Spending money is not an issue.

That is opposite of the former NBA owner that we once had.

Keep trying Richardson......if were so close once.

Anonymous said...

Yea keep trying JR.

Dont stoop down to the greedy players union swine level trying to rip fans off for more millions each as gas heads to 5 bucks a gallon.

Lets get our priorities in order.

Who pays but the masses for higher cable tv costs, food, electricity, clothing, heating fuel, etc etc.

In the worst of economic times do the greedy players union take a pay cut? Hell no, they demand more out of America to pay for their 20 million penthouse condos, Bentleys, Rolex, Rolls and beachfront homes while hanging out at strip clubs or gambling in Vegas. Same for all pro sports.

They play 3 hrs on Sunday 16 times year and will strike if they are forced to play 2 more games or get more millions?

Who would defend a pig but a pig?

Anonymous said...

George Hanson said:

What a load of BS! So two owners just happened to call during your conversation and then they just happened to be the two most prominent in the league?!

At least Jerry's woken up to the fact the heat is on...but it doesn't matter, the Panther's will continue to lose.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Jay Hanig said...

I've only been to one Panthers game and will never go back even for free tickets.

I sat up in the nosebleed section on an uncomfortable seat behind two guys who stood up on every play. I had a wonderful view of their backs but I couldn't see the screen across the stadium nor the actual field below us.

They were rude when I asked them if they could please stay in their seats. Well, they win.

Now I sit in my recliner and enjoy the best seat in the house watching via HD TV and home theater sound system. The beer is always cold and it costs no more than Food Lion's. The room is always warm, unlike those frozen seats in the stratosphere at BOA Stadium.

Anonymous said...

I guess ticket price hikes do not surprise millionaires. Good work, Mr. T.

Shane Douglas said...

Although I'm not a fan of the Charlotte Panthers or the Carolina Panthers if you will, I'm through with pro sports. If I desire to watch a bunch of overpaid millionaires I'll find another way to do it.

Anonymous said...

We forgive you Jerry! How can we stay mad at the only football team in town!

Eric said...

I grew up watching a team that could score A LOT of points. The Bills were still 0-4 in SuperBowls. And yes, it was the most amazing run in sports history, but 1 would've been nice. D wins championships!

Anonymous said...

Hairspray??????

Anonymous said...

I thought the reason the team was named the Carolina Panthers was for long-term planning purposes. When it comes time to blackmail the city for a new stadium in the next couple of years or so, it's easier to threaten to move to another city in the NC/SC area and still keep the same name. Alternative venues are almost always the best way to force taxpayers to pay for these expensive facilities.

GSO Cats Fan said...

Archiguy, there are plenty of us Panthers fans here in Greensboro - and in many other communties in North and South Carolina.

Anonymous said...

To those thinking that including the two state are was not a good decision. The rest of the US viewed and still does to some degree, Charlotte as a small city. The NFL needed to hear that a larger fan base for the TV viewing revenue could be met by more than Charlotte. We probably wouldn't have a team if they were the Charlotte Panthers.

Anonymous said...

"I can’t run the business the way I’d run it if it was a father-and-son business.”

Like it was run when we went to the Super Bowl?

Anonymous said...

Thank god he(richardson) realizes the NFL has evolved from what Foxy was coaching(not to lose). I feel much better than I did after the News conference, with the comments he made here. I was very frustrated with it looking like they were going after a Defensive minded coach, again.

Anonymous said...

James, this life is not free, neither is running an NFL franchise. If you want charity then look elsewhere. So 'shwud' you ever decide to actually pay for a game, you will find yourself magically transported into the stadium at kick off.

Anonymous said...

@Archiguy:

That was one of the stupidest comments I've ever had the misfortune of reading.

We who read the entire post are now collectively less intelligent for consuming such drivel.

Anonymous said...

IF RICHARDSON IS LOOKING FOR SUGGESTIONS, HE SHOULD HAVE FIRED HURNEY JUST BEFORE FOX. HE ALONG WITH THE SO-CALLED PERSONNEL DEPT ACQUIRED NON-PERFORMING PLAYERS THAT CAN'T PASS, BLOCK OR TACKLE. SOME OF THE HIGHEST PAID ARE THE WEAKEST PERFORMERS. IF HE BELIEVES THE PANTHERS ARE IN AN EXCEPTIONAL PLACE, HE NEEDS TO GET REAL AND MAYBE HE SHOULD SELL THE TEAM .

James said...

Anonimous,
James here. Dont be talking down to me like im your son or sumthing. What I'm talking about our equil rights for all the people of charlotte to be able to see a game at first hand. If the Richardson family can gets more people to sees games first hand than they can bild a much bigger fan base. We are not all as lucky as you and because of all that we are not allowed to see the games like you. If Mr. Jerry can give just 1 game per year to those that dont have privilege to have seasoned tickets then he can increase fan base and its more fare for the rest of charlotte. The people that go to 16 games per year cant afford to give 1 to the people like me and my friends? That's the reaal problem with this whole thing. Its not Mr. Jerry, its all the people that are allowed to go to games and those of that are not.

Anonymous said...

James, please learn how to spell and learn correct grammar.

James said...

I'll get write on that.

Anonymous said...

When JR was peddling the PSLs I was thinking of a possible nightmare scenario. There could come a day when the owner would put the financial interests of his team above the need to field a competitive football team. The PSL owners would then be the free and easy money source for the owner, and the value of PSLs would be nullified. For many year I trusted Richardson, but I know the day has come when PSL owners are SOL because Richardson is satisfied with nurturing his own short term financial interests. Someone give me one good reason we should believe what JR told Tommy in that phone conversation. NOTHING this franchise has done or is doing over the last 18-24 months points to anything except cost-saving. PSL owners ensure that Richardson's team does not have to be competitive to be a financial success. He is cashing in on that promise and good will right now.

Anonymous said...

JR needs another transplant, as in removing his head from his ass. Really the cost of doing business well that sounds all well in good except usually the product gets better not drastically worse.

ffhd1clt said...

Dear Archiguy,
I have news for you, the stadium is filled on any given Sunday with more than half of the fans from outside the city of Charlotte. If you would like to challenge this fact, get in touch with the Panthers' office and they will answer most any question you may have. By the way, I'm a native Charlottean, PSL owner, and have lived here all of my life.

Anonymous said...

James,
Not talking down to you, you just seem to want something for nothing. I can't afford to even walk near that stadium. I have been unemployed for two years. I watch on the boob tube like everyone else. But you don't hear me whining about getting me in those doors for free. I am part of the fan base and it does not require me getting a free ride.

Anonymous said...

The Panther fan base needs a huge shot in the arm to get their spirit back. Now with the chance at Luck gone, Richardson needs to get off his wallet and get a big name coach to give fans hope.

Colin said...

Hey James...I do feel sorry for you. You actually believe that "The people that go to 16 games per year cant afford to give 1 to the people like me and my friends?" Apparently it has been ingrained in you that others "owe you".
You need to learn that no one owes you anything. Go out and earn money for a ticket and quit whining that the Panthers or Panther fans should give you one. Put on your big boy pants and stand like a man rather than a whining wuss.

WarrenE said...

It's called "hubris," Jerry. Look it up.

James said...

i am not being greedy asking for 1 game a year. everyone should be able to see panthers in person and if it means those with more money should pay for us then yes. That is only what is fare. if we are doing that with healthcare now why can we not do the same with football? i don't understand why people are so greedy. they need to spread the wealth to everyone. my hope is that obama will get involved in the new lock out and make this happen.

Anonymous said...

James,
You are a lost cause. Good luck with that...

Kevin said...

James, You blew your charade with you last post. Funny guy, but no one, even you, can be that stupid. Props fo pull our legs for a few posts, though.

James said...

O no, my cover be blowed.

James said...

Can't a brotha get a free 300 level seat?

PullinYoLegLikeJames said...

James,
Sure, meet me in the Mint Street Tunnel tonight at midnight and I'll give you my PSLs. So I know it's you, please be shouting " I got money now!" as loud as you can. Enjoy!

Anonymous said...

Jimmy Clausen is a smush-faced poon

Anonymous said...

Again, you are right on the money, Tommy. Curious though that J. Rich would call you and not your column -writing colleagues in the sports department. Mayhaps statement No. 1 in my comment explains that.

Anonymous said...

Tommy I've never met you in person but you are my Homeboy...you speak for people whose voices would otherwise be unheard or ignored. Good job!!!!!!!

Barrington Slate said...

Hitler finds out Andrew Luck is staying in college:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ddaQpZZMX_I

Brian W. said...

Response to:
"IF RICHARDSON IS LOOKING FOR SUGGESTIONS, HE SHOULD HAVE FIRED HURNEY JUST BEFORE FOX. HE ALONG WITH THE SO-CALLED PERSONNEL DEPT ACQUIRED NON-PERFORMING PLAYERS THAT CAN'T PASS, BLOCK OR TACKLE. SOME OF THE HIGHEST PAID ARE THE WEAKEST PERFORMERS. IF HE BELIEVES THE PANTHERS ARE IN AN EXCEPTIONAL PLACE, HE NEEDS TO GET REAL AND MAYBE HE SHOULD SELL THE TEAM."

I couldn't agree more with you. I believe Don Gregory, the Director of College Scouting, should also be held accountable for his own personal mistakes he has made in the personnel department. He knows exactly who he screwed up on and John Fox is the one who is left feeling the effects of it while Don Gregory is allowed to keep his job.

I went back and watched Marty Hurney's press conference right after he selected Jimmy Clausen last spring and in the video Marty Hurney says "I" liked him several times then corrects himself with "We" liked him...

Jimmy Clausen and Armanti Edwards, Everette Brown where all of Marty Hurney's mistakes.

Anonymous said...

Tomlinson must have left a message on Richardsons voice mail saying he would sit on him and crush him flat as a pancake if he didnt call him back and tell him what he wanted to hear.
Apparently Richardson called back within a few minutes and begged fat boy to lay off him knowing what a 700 lb piece of blubber would do to him.
An Eskimo family could eat off that size of whale blubber all winter.

tommy tomlinson said...

Anon 5:35: I can't tell who you are, but that doesn't mean you can't go show that comment to your family! They'll be so proud.

John said...

I can't believe some people thought your other article was mean spirited. Needed to be said about time someone did. And it got a reaction. And I feel a lot better about what was said in this report than that news conference.

And for the guy who wants a free seat. It's a business it's not a charity. No rational being can honestly believe they have a right to attend any for profit performance for free.

Anonymous said...

If you want a good QB pay the price. You could have had him cheap last year. Yes! Michael Vick. I would still pay a good price to get him, and then, JR, get some good offensive linemen to open up some holes for your three great running backs. I could name three great All-American High School defensive backs to beat some of the dead-heads who are in the Defensive backfield, who just wait for the other team receivers to catch the ball and then throw their bodies out to try and trip the receiver up. Signed

Barrington Slate said...

Anon 5:35 is a DBAG

Anonymous said...

Screw Hurney and the horse he rode in on!

Anonymous said...

how about this scenario for the fans to get back to being a little optimistic.. dick lebeau - hc
josh mcdaniels- oc
kevin greene- dc
mike minter- dbc
that would get charlotte back!

Barrington Slate said...

Mike Minter is coaching peewee football right now. If he becomes the DBC then our buddy James from above should become in charge of ticket sales for the Panthers.

Anonymous said...

who cares are db's don't play much anyways. minter coaches hs football. couldn't hurt right

Anonymous said...

Would it be un-pc fatism or obesism to tell TT he needs to go to LA to be on "The Biggest Loser"?

On the other hand Hollywood needs a new Chris Farley or John Candy so you may skip Loser. Make millions in funny fatboy films just stay away from the dust.

BTW Jer is ROFLHFAO at the CD & whiny fans all the way to the bank.

PullinYoLegLikeJames said...

James, I went to the Mint Street tunnel last night but you weren't there. Not to worry, I met your cousin Bootsie and gave him the PSLs. He said he would take you to the games for free. Bootie tried to sell me some "rock", but I didn't buy any 'cause I can pick up free rocks all over town.
Enjoy the games James!

Lynne Stevenson said...

I still say the Carolina Panthers fans should pool their money and attempt a hostile buyout of the team and all of its investors. Then maybe we would have a team worth pulling for and could get in the spirit of having a REAL PROFESSIONAL FOOTBALL TEAM instead of a junior high school leveled one posing as a professional one...Too bad I don't have a few spare million lying around in a trust fund, or I'd be the first in line to buy them out...

Anonymous said...

NFL-less Los Angeles Ca has been begging Richardson to relocate there for a few years now so maybe he will finally take them up on their offer since the media and everyone in and around the QC have been so nasty and hateful to him.

Anonymous said...

You think he's gonna get hospitality in L.A? Quit trying to stir the pot. The biggest problem with this area as a fan..too many people from other places(usually up north somewhere) that root for the panthers when were good and bash them when they suck! go back to ohio where there are no jobs and the women are ugly and everyone is a steelers fan!

Anonymous said...

The problem is the calculated pattern of mistreatment of pro sports owners. Its the NFL owner this time as the local media brings him to his knees going from hero to bum to you outta here in short time.

This is the exact blueprint as was with the original NBA owner with a few alterations.

Richardson is officially at bum status. Next stop = OUT. Will the NFL award a new franchise to any new owners who have a billion spare cash in bad times this time around? They know the routine.

Pro sports owners. BEWARE.

James said...

PullinYoLegLikeJames,
I dont appreshiate the making fun of. I dont live near the uptown so I could not meet you there if i wanted too. I currentely live in Shelby and do not have a car. I think you missed the intire point of my comments. I am not asking for your P.S.L.s or all of you're tickets. I am just sayin that if the team and the NFL as a hole would share the wealth and allow the little people like me and my people come to at least 1 game per year.

Second, I am a recuvering drug addict (3 weeks sober) and i do not appreciate you're jokes.

Anonymous said...

James:
I wish you the best with your recovery efforts. I am sure most on here would encourage you to stay the course and keep the faith. You can do it!

Also, one thing you should know is that the Panthers have a free event for the fans at the stadium every year in late July or early August called "FanFest". You will see it advertised when training camp starts up. It is a lot of fun and a chance to see the stadium, watch an organized practice, and see the new players up close. It takes place on a Saturday and usually starts mid morning.

Best to you in 2011! Jeremiah 29:11 for you. Please read it when you have a chance.

Anonymous said...

For the folks out there calling JR an idiot, please find a new team.

I think this past year was necessary. We needed to start fresh. If I quesiton anything, it's the things that happened in the previous seasons that led up to this year. Signing Jake to a long term deal, trading away bundles of draft pics for one player and the refusal to go after anyone via free agency even when it's painfully obvious that the players we have on the roster can't do the job. I'm not sure if JR was MIA during the years leading up due to health reasons or what, but I believe him when he says that he will turn things around. Looking forward to next year.

James said...

Screw Fan Fest. I deserve to go to a regular seasoned game. You basterds are all greedy. Take you're Jeremiah and shove it.

Jeffrey P said...

The subject of Tommy Tomlinson is a controversial issue. I find my self constantly drawn back to the subject of Tommy Tomlinson. While it is becoming a hot topic for debate, it is yet to receive proper recognition for laying the foundations of democracy. It still has the power to shock the aristocracy, many of whom blame the influence of television. Hold onto your hats as we begin a journey into Tommy Tomlinson.

There is cultural and institutional interdependence between members of any community. Back when Vealinger reamarked ‘the power struggle will continue while the great tale of humanity remains untold’ he created a monster which society has been attempting to tame ever since. No symbol is more potent than Tommy Tomlinson in society today. It irons out misconceptions from our consciousness.

Status, Security, Fame - Tommy Tomlinson, all revolve around this 'golden fleece'. It has been said that the one thing in society which could survive a nuclear attack is Tommy Tomlinson. This is incorrect, actually cockroaches are the only thing which can survive a nuclear attack.

The dictionary defines economics as 'the social science concerned with the production, distribution, exchange, and consumption of goods and services'. Of course, Tommy Tomlinson fits perfectly into the Watkis-Teeth-Pulling model. Taking special care to highlight the role of Tommy Tomlinson within the vast framework which this provides.

When displayed this way it becomes very clear that Tommy Tomlinson is of great importance. It goes with out saying that the average wage will continue to follow Tommy Tomlinson for the foreseeable future. In the light of this free trade must be examined.

No man is an island, but what of politics? Comparing the ideals of the young with the reality felt by their elders is like contrasting playing with a puppy and singing with a blackbird.

Consider this, spoken at the tender age of 14 by the uncompromising Kuuipo Shandy 'consciousness complicates a myriad of progressions.' He was first introduced to Tommy Tomlinson by his mother. It would be wise to approach the subject with the thought that 'if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all'. However this can lead to missing out important facts.
Why did Tommy Tomlinson cross the road? - To get to the other side! Just my little joke, but lets hope that Tommy Tomlinson doesn't inspire similar hilarity in the next elections.

What can we conclude? Well, Tommy Tomlinson has played a large part in the development of man in the 20th Century and its influence remains strong. It enriches, 'literally' plants seeds for harvest, and it brings the best out in people.

Here with the final word is Hollywood's Miles Poppins: 'I love Tommy Tomlinson? Yes! Hurray for Tommy Tomlinson!'

Jeffrey P said...

The subject of Tommy Tomlinson is a controversial issue. I find my self constantly drawn back to the subject of Tommy Tomlinson. While it is becoming a hot topic for debate, it is yet to receive proper recognition for laying the foundations of democracy. It still has the power to shock the aristocracy, many of whom blame the influence of television. Hold onto your hats as we begin a journey into Tommy Tomlinson.

There is cultural and institutional interdependence between members of any community. Back when Vealinger reamarked ‘the power struggle will continue while the great tale of humanity remains untold’ he created a monster which society has been attempting to tame ever since. No symbol is more potent than Tommy Tomlinson in society today. It irons out misconceptions from our consciousness.

When displayed this way it becomes very clear that Tommy Tomlinson is of great importance. It goes with out saying that the average reader will continue to follow Tommy Tomlinson for the foreseeable future. In the light of this free trade must be examined.

No man is an island, but what of politics? Comparing the ideals of the young with the reality felt by their elders is like contrasting playing with a puppy and singing with a blackbird. Consider this, spoken at the tender age of 14 by the uncompromising Kuuipo Shandy 'consciousness complicates a myriad of progressions.' He was first introduced to Tommy Tomlinson by his mother. It would be wise to approach the subject with the thought that 'if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all'. However this can lead to missing out important facts.
Why did Tommy Tomlinson cross the road? - To get to the other side! Just my little joke, but lets hope that Tommy Tomlinson doesn't inspire similar hilarity in the next draft.

What can we conclude? Well, Tommy Tomlinson has played a large part in the development of man in the 21st Century and his influence remains strong. He enriches, 'literally' plants seeds for harvest, and it brings the best out in people.

Anonymous said...

James and JeffreyP:

You two should get together and share your insights on life. Wish I could be a fly on the wall for THAT one. Peace to you both! James, after reading your past comments, I think we can all figure out you are not who you pretend you are, and your intentions to stir that pot are not honorable in any way.

James said...

Yous sayin i'm not james? I'm james.

Anonymous said...

TOO LITTLE, TOO LATE JERRY!!!!

Jimmy C said...

Tom & Jerry... kinda rings a bell.

Go Irish!

Brian W. said...

Response to:
"IF RICHARDSON IS LOOKING FOR SUGGESTIONS, HE SHOULD HAVE FIRED HURNEY JUST BEFORE FOX. HE ALONG WITH THE SO-CALLED PERSONNEL DEPT ACQUIRED NON-PERFORMING PLAYERS THAT CAN'T PASS, BLOCK OR TACKLE. SOME OF THE HIGHEST PAID ARE THE WEAKEST PERFORMERS. IF HE BELIEVES THE PANTHERS ARE IN AN EXCEPTIONAL PLACE, HE NEEDS TO GET REAL AND MAYBE HE SHOULD SELL THE TEAM."

I couldn't agree more with you. I believe Don Gregory, the Director of College Scouting, should also be held accountable for his own personal mistakes he has made in the personnel department. He knows exactly who he screwed up on and John Fox is the one who is left feeling the effects of it while Don Gregory is allowed to keep his job.

I went back and watched Marty Hurney's press conference right after he selected Jimmy Clausen last spring and in the video Marty Hurney says "I" liked him several times then corrects himself with "We" liked him...

Jimmy Clausen and Armanti Edwards, Everette Brown where all of Marty Hurney's mistakes.