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April 28, 2011

Can't tell the Oakland Coliseum names without a scorecard

The Oakland Coliseum just got its fourth corporate name in the last 14 years, after agreed to pay $1.2 million a year for the next six years for naming rights for the home of the Raiders and A's. (Make your own jokes about unloading excess outfielders.) That's not a ton of money, but as I told the Bay Citizen (and Craig Calcaterra seconded), used stadium names aren't worth much, because eventually everyone just calls it "the Coliseum."

Worse yet for the new name owners: They themselves are in the process of changing their name, to (supposedly this already happened back in January, but I guess either someone forgot to get the memo or it doesn't apply within the U.S.). So if anyone calls it anything but "the Coliseum" it'll likely be "the O," which will only end up being free publicity for a different company, or maybe for robot assistants.

Meanwhile, the San Francisco 49ers have hired CAA to sell naming rights to their as-yet-unbuilt Santa Clara stadium, which makes it even less clear what the heck Gideon Yu is for.


Actually it's only the third corporate name to get put on the stadium. UMAX never got their name up on the building. And it turns out the $1.2 million yearly they're paying for the Overstock/ name is actually exactly what McAfee was paying pre-recession.

Posted by Dan on April 28, 2011 01:33 PM

for the "luckiest city since hiroshima" another example of the typical goofiness. it'll always be "the mausoleum" to me - with apologies to steve sommers.

Posted by Paul w. on April 28, 2011 03:52 PM

yes, Paul, thanks to Al Davis a pretty average MLB stadium (with great foul territory... if you are a pitcher, of course) was transformed magically into a sub par football stadium and a terrible baseball facility.

Posted by John Bladen on April 28, 2011 08:57 PM

You're correct. I live in the East Bay and we've always called it the "Coliseum". It is a joke to call it anything else. We've also called the arena just that, "the Arena." Oracle is not getting their money's worth.
While we're on this subject, I work in San Jose and everyone I talk to there calls the arena "the Tank". Not HP anything.

Posted by Joe on April 29, 2011 03:55 AM

The naming rights thing is turning into an embarrassing joke:

Monster Cable, Candlestick: 4 yrs @ $1.5M/yr.

McAfee, Coliseum: 10 yrs at $1.32M/yr.

Calling the Coliseum "The Big O": 6 yrs at $1.2M/yr.

Going backwards on naming rights dollars is exactly why Santa Clara ain't getting any Farmers-style deal. The "stadium booster" crowd in Santa Clara has proven itself to be completely delusional on this entire issue.

The 49ers will be demanding the lion's share of any such proceeds for the naming of the concourses and clubs inside the stadium - leaving even less for the Santa Clara Stadium Authority's overall stadium naming rights.

The 49ers are already in violation of the stadium Term Sheet - and so is our city's Stadium Authority for allowing them to do this.

Bill Bailey, Treasurer,


Posted by Bill Bailey on May 1, 2011 01:20 PM

You are wrong Bill on your assessment.

All money from the naming rights is going toward construction of the stadium.

This and the fact that 700M was given my Farmers to LA not to long ago.

If the 49ers get half of that the stadium will be in great shape to go and Santa Clara will have guaranteed themselves excess into their general fund.

SC is still in charge of selling premium seating licenses and advertising.

Posted by Sid on May 3, 2011 05:08 PM


That is absolutely and completely false, whether you meant L.A. or Santa Clara: The entire $700M is NOT going toward stadium construction down there - and the naming rights that the 49ers collect up here for concourses within the stadium isn't going towards construction here, either.

The likelihood of the 49ers even getting half of LA's deal is sheer fantasy -- and it's about worth a good laugh.

Another false statement you made: There is NO excess going into our city's General Fund. NONE. ZERO. And if you'd taken the trouble to actually read the stadium Term Sheet, you'd have known that.

And making our city sell the PSLs for the 49ers is *precisely* the problem. Nobody wants them; all you have to do is to recall the stink they left in Oakland.

In fact, the 49ers fans themselves created a laugh riot of their own when they tried to claim that the 49ers tix marketers were misleading them on the issue. When this really hits home for those so-called fans: It will be a nightmare for the Santa Clara Stadium Authority.

If you think that corporate seat purchases will make up for what Joe Blow is no longer willing to pay, I've got a scuba gear franchise in Des Moines, Iowa, I could sell you.

In fact, Sid, when YOU yourself step up and buy your OWN PSL in Santa Clara for $20,000, then I'll be thoroughly impressed.

Bill Bailey, Treasurer,


Posted by Bill Bailey on May 5, 2011 03:46 AM


I am going to buy a PSL in Santa Clara because I am a huge 49er fan.....I got my crew lined up for when they go on sale next year.

If you noticed the 49ers have sold 150M in luxury boxes already with 4 years left to go before the place gets built.

Unliked you, there are several very rich 49ers fans in the Bay Area who will shell out $$ for something like this.

They are a 1/4 of the way there and the league, team, and naming rights have not come into play yet.

You are way off on the naming rights piece as the 49ers will get 200M-300M and maybe more if the Raiders move in as well.

You are incorrect on the general fund piece. Any shortfall from the Stadium authority comes from the general fund but any excess from the same authority goes right back.

You have to remember the Stadium Authority is an extension of the general fund. So even if the money sits in the Stadium Authority fund it is just like $$ in a corporations's subsidiary....It is still an assest on the books.

The stadium will get built and a Super Bowl will be rotated to the Bay Area every 4 years because of it.

I will be sitting in a suite or a field level seat in 2015, while you will be still crying foul on something that actually will turn out to make the city of Santa Clara money...

Posted by Sid on July 9, 2011 02:01 PM

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