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Discussion in 'NWSL' started by DennisM, Oct 13, 2003.
Foudy 2000: don't want MLS "riding on our coattails"
OK Sachin, you wanted proof, you got it. Where is my $25 reward?
When Hendricks, the Discovery cable TV executive whom the players affectionately call "St. John" for his devotion to their cause, asked the MLS to devise a start-up business plan for a women's league - only to say no thanks - it wasn't forgotten by MLS. Neither was Foudy's comment that the women's players didn't want MLS "riding on our coattails."
An article written by a journalist who demonstrates in the very first paragraph that she surfs internet soccer sites, which is probably where she came up with that tidbit.
yep. It's true.
First off, that writer is not a soccer fan. I know this as almost fact
There's nothing new in the article.
Yawn. And people are still making a big deal about something Foudy may or may not have said three years ago? That's really lame.
The same Newsday writer was the one who "outed" WUSA for turning down Oxygen Network in an April 2002 article.
She wrote that Oxygen Network went out of its way to try to land WUSA, by producing post-season exhibition game telecasts and offering free TV time (Sundays at 5-7pm ET) to WUSA for 2002.
The source who went to the writer expressing her frustration was no doubt Oxygen Sports Executive Producer Lydia Stephans.
WUSA's rejection of Oxygen was consistent with WUSA management believing that WUSA was "big" when WUSA was really a small business.
Oxygen, with only 30 million homes at the end of 2001, wasn't "big" enough to deliver the eyeballs to the sponsors, so one WUSA official told me via email.
So WUSA went to buy time with PAX (and lied about the direction of money flow by claiming that PAX paid a $1 million rights fee.) We all knew what happened with that roll of the dice by WUSA.
Bottom line: the writer was correct. Hendricks and the Women's Sports Foundation (particularly Donna DeVarona) were off base.
Corporate America didn't kill WUSA.
TV networks didn't kill WUSA.
WUSA management killed WUSA with countless self-inflicted wounds.
I dunno about that. Maybe the ideas have been bandied about here and in a few articles, but I haven't seen anything as comprehensive... and damning... as this piece.
The WUSA would never have been possible without Hendricks' Herculean work. But Hendricks has been roundly criticized for saying the WUSA had to suspend operations because America's CEOs didn't "step up."
"I was shocked, I just thought 'You've gotta be kidding me,'" another major sports commissioner said. "You are responsible for your own success and failure, period. To think otherwise in professional sports is grossly naive."
WNBA commissioner Val Ackerman said Friday: "I got fond of saying in the last year that there was no Title IX for women's professional team sports, meaning there is no sort of higher being or higher law that is going to mandate that somehow it has to be equal for the men and the women. We've got to earn our way."
Yeah, I agree that the Foudy obsession is silly. Get over it, fellas.
That said, what is interesting is whether or not the relationship btwn WUSA founders/management and MLS is so far gone as to be completely irretrievable.
A lot of "last ditch" ideas include some coordination with MLS... And MLS certainly would be foolish to turn their back on potential tenants in places like LA, Dallas, Columbus, New Jersey, and Chicago (if they move fwd with a new stadium).
PAX Pact Doesn't Meet WUSA's Goals:[ALL EDITIONS]
JOHNETTE HOWARD. Newsday. (Combined editions).Long Island, N.Y.: Apr 7, 2002. pg. C.17
From the article (it is archived):
I agree that the Foudy quote was a little shakey given that the writer didn't attribute it to anyone.
But, overall, I think it is an excellent article. It's tough to hear and read if you're a fan, player or official in WUSA, but I think ignoring or dismissing the contents of the article would be akin to sticking one's head in the sand and only underscore the point about the WUSA's arrogance.
Now THAT is funny.
So it took how many years to figure this out?
It's an excellent article, and should be read for what it says about the WUSA's flawed structure and bad decision-making habits. As such, it's the best I've seen. As "proof" that Foudy said something deliberately designed to hurt the feelings of some bigsoccer poster, it's worthless. But to read it as such is to miss the huge points it makes.
Wonder what Val would say if David Stern had said that (in public, that is)?
Re: Foudy 2000: don't want MLS "riding on our coattails"
I asked for a citation. I want to see some cold hard proof, not an unconfirmed comment. But this is pretty dammning.
Please refute the facts
Maybe she is not a soccer fan but please refute any of the facts in the story.
Pretty damning article and is a real eye-opener. I knew the management was bad in the WUSA but I did not know they were completely incompetent.
If any sponsors sitting on the fence looking to sponsor WUSA2 sees this article, they will not put their $2.5 million up to see it wither away overnight.
Re: Re: Newsday article
Here's an AP article from 2001, not yesterday:
"Unlike the WNBA, which has succeeded on the coattails of the NBA, there is no men's league backing the WUSA.
" 'We want to do this on our own,' Foudy said. 'With that is great risk, but also great opportunities. Hopefully, when we pull this off, it will give other sports and other investors the courage to make this step and keep going.' "
Of course, the gist of the Newsday article is that the WUSA basically broke new ground in the administration of a US soccer league. Whereas the people who ran other leagues from the ASL to the NASL (and dozens of others) basically shot themselves in the foot with their bad decisions and stupid ideas, the WUSA shot themselves in the head.