Sports Econ Blog


Early NBA Power Picks

NBA Power Picks 12/14/18 Basketball Reference Playoff Probabilities

Posted by on December 14, 2018 in National Basketball Association


Rays Ball Park Limbo

Interview with Tampa Bay Times. Stadium deals in MLB and NFL.pdf I wondered if you would be willing to give some perspective on the collapse of the Rays deal. The questions I have are: Does this look like a play by the Rays to get a better deal? Yes. These moves/threats are all part of…

Posted by on December 12, 2018 in Major League Baseball


NFL Playoff Power Picks: Week 15

NFL Power Picks 12/11/18 NFL Power Picks 12/4/18 NFL Power Picks 11/27/18 Upshot: Playoff Simulator NFL Mid-Season Power Picks 2018.  

Posted by on December 11, 2018 in National Football League


Post-Season Bowl Picks

Taking and Giving Points. Bowl-Season Picks and Point Spreads. FBS Logit Power Picks 12/2/18  

Posted by on December 5, 2018 in NCAA Football


CFP Playoff Power Picks

Power 5 Conference Playoff Picks. FBS Logit Power Picks 11/25/18. FBS Logit Power Picks 11/18/18. FBS Logit Power Picks 11/11/18. CFP Rankings ESPN Playoff Predictor  

Posted by on November 25, 2018 in NCAA Football


Repercussions from Concussions

Interview with AP / WaPo. Followup AP. We are hoping someone like yourself can walk us through how the NFL and NHL concussion settlements are different and why. The NFL agreed to a billion-dollar settlement. It seems the NHL players got just $19 million (we are still working to confirm that number on the record, but that’s…

Posted by on November 12, 2018 in National Hockey League


San Antonio Chargers

Interview with San Antonio Business Journal. Our mayor has indicated that San Antonio leaders should reach out to Los Angeles Chargers ownership, in light of that team’s severe struggles in finding support in the City of Angels. Do you believe there is merit to San Antonio at least initiating dialogue with the Chargers/why? Yes because…

Posted by on November 7, 2018 in National Football League


MLB Playoff Power Picks

Vroom-Daddy MLB 2018 Postseason Picks Gamma v. Logit MLB Picks ESPN MLB post-season picks

Posted by on September 25, 2018 in Major League Baseball


Super League

Interview with Pittsburgh Post-Gazette 9/6/2018. (pdf) (xls) Pitt made $26.3 million from the ACC in the 2016-17 fiscal year while Connecticut — a former conference mate in the Big East that is now in the American Athletic Conference, a league Pitt may well have ended up in had it not landed in the ACC — made…

Posted by on September 7, 2018 in NCAA Football


Jerry’s World

Interview with Bloomberg News. Cowboys Stadium 2010. Do you have any estimates on how much Arlington has spent on pro sports since first building the (first) Rangers stadium? My estimates show about $960 million, which include $135 million in bonds for the 1994 Rangers stadium, $325 million for the Cowboys stadium, and $500 million for…

Posted by on August 22, 2018 in National Football League


Zoo Effect

Interview with Alabama Media Group (Mobile). I wanted to ask you if a city like Mobile (population near 200K, with a regional population over 400K) needs to be more aggressive and focused in addressing new stadium or sports venue construction projects. Or, do you think Mobile is smart by not forking over any taxpayer money…

Posted by on August 22, 2018 in Major League Baseball


Big League Swap

Interview with Nashville Biz Journal. What makes Nashville a compelling city for a potential MLB team? Why would Manfred include it on his list – however speculative it is? There are 3 basic layers of MLB market potential. The top “automatic” home markets have a market size greater than 2 million TV households (e.g. Atlanta). Second…

Posted by on July 18, 2018 in Major League Baseball


Sunshine Paradox

Interview with Tampa Tribune. Fan-Age PDF Do you have any perspective on what could be behind the more than 5 percent decline in MLB attendance? The entertainment dollar in the sports industry across the board is becoming very competitive very rapidly. All major sports are experiencing a secular and regional aging in fan demographics. This…

Posted by on July 18, 2018 in Major League Baseball


What’s in a Name?

Interview with Tampa Bay Times. How much (estimate) could the Rays get for the naming rights of a new ballpark in Tampa? The current going rate for naming rights for MLB Parks in a Tampa sized market is probably in the $8 million to $10 million annual range for a 25-year to 30-year term, and…

Posted by on June 23, 2018 in Major League Baseball


World Cup of Political Football

Interview with Pacific Standard / (PDF Graphs). Football 365 requote.  In general, what does hosting a World Cup mean for the economy of the host country? Most countries, when vying for the right to host the tournament, tout the influx of tourism dollars and infrastructure investment that will theoretically boost the economy, but is that often borne out…

Posted by on June 20, 2018 in UEFA Football


The Closing Window

Interview with the New York Times. PDF and Images. Roger Noll of Stanford had some pretty good stuff today on how the Knights’ miraculous run “attenuates the honeymoon effect,” from the typical three-year window for expansion teams in non-traditional hockey markets. 1) Is that something you generally agree with? Yes I mentioned that in print…

Posted by on June 10, 2018 in National Hockey League


Revolving Revolution

Interview with Columbus Dispatch. Back in 2012, the city and the county purchased what was then a privately held arena, relying on casino tax money to prop up arena operations, repay loans used in the purchase and pay for capital repairs. Those tax receipts have fallen well short of projections, and the arena has no…

Posted by on May 31, 2018 in National Hockey League


Tamp Em Up Solid

Interview with Tampa Bay Times. Location theory. If the Rays new ballpark has about 600,000 more fans within a 15 mile radius, what might that do to their average attendance? Total MLB attendance remains a variable function of market size, venue capacity and team quality, but according to this simple location theory metric, an increase…

Posted by on May 24, 2018 in Major League Baseball


Piece of Integrity

Interview with CBS. I am writing on integrity fees. Are the pro leagues and NCAA entitled to them?  Is so, what should they cover? The Big 4 professional leagues and the 2 quasi-professional NCAA revenue sports are seeking a piece of sports betting action, and it can easily be argued that they are not necessarily…

Posted by on May 17, 2018 in National Football League


Bargain Price

Interview with Charlotte Observer. (Sporting News) -What benefit might David Tepper see in bringing in minority owners if he technically doesn’t need any (financially speaking)? David Tepper will be certainly more fan friendly and way more accessible to the media than “Mister” Richardson. In terms of the overall Panthers fan experience this should be a positive…

Posted by on May 16, 2018 in National Football League


Sure Thing

Interview with Las Vegas Sun. -Is downsizing new stadiums projects and increasing technology and amenities the best way to comate the ever improving at-home game experience? Welcome to the new NFL where smart luxury stadiums are economically designed to maximize team profit rather than fan welfare. The general downsizing trend in the NFL is consistent…

Posted by on May 8, 2018 in National Football League


Weird Is Good

Weird Is Good—Phillip McGloin

Posted by on May 5, 2018 in NCAA Basketball


Yum Center Reboot

Interview with Louisville Courier-Journal. Top 10 Revenues and Salaries. I’m just wondering about what the Yum Center will be like and how it will be perceived by the community in 30 years, when the bonds are scheduled to be paid off. Can you weigh in with any perspective? The new luxury arenas have at least…

Posted by on May 4, 2018 in NCAA Basketball


Mystery Ticket Shortage

Interview with Toronto Star. We’re revealing that MLSE has designated an unknown number of season ticket holders “commercial resellers” and marked up their tickets 30% for next season. They also offer to cancel the markup if the ticket holder joins a “preferred reseller program” which hasn’t been well defined yet, but many suspect will involve…

Posted by on April 11, 2018 in National Hockey League


Pay for Play

Complete Interview (XL) with Bloomberg Law. The proposed superficial symptom-treating political solution to the economic exploitation of athletes at all levels is logistically problematic and probably counterproductive. The economic problem of exploitation of athletes derives directly from the vertically integrated monopsony power of the NCAA but more deeply from the monopsony power of the big boy…

Posted by on April 7, 2018 in NCAA Football


Cinderella Paradox

Interview with CBS.  According to the U.S. Department of Education, the school’s athletic revenue and expenses were $13.8 million as of its latest school year.  Do you find it strange that the numbers match up perfectly? This is common accounting practice. Are most of the benefits that Cinderella schools realize fleeting? Yes, but there is…

Posted by on March 28, 2018 in NCAA Basketball


Bottom Big 10

Interview with Bloomberg News. B10 revenue splits. The B10 poverty cycle is the positive feedback loop from winning to talent to revenues to expenditures for the bottom 7 programs. The success cycle is the opposite talent revenue loop for the top 7 programs. This is the major problem in almost all sports where the rich…

Posted by on March 28, 2018 in NCAA Football


Folie de Mars

Interview with French financial paper Challenges. March madness in NCAA college basketball occurs in a natural US sports entertainment vacuum every Spring since the early 1980s. The lack luster NFL free agency period (transfer window) is followed by only a few true US football fanatics, MLB regular season that usually begins after the first of April…

Posted by on March 28, 2018 in NCAA Basketball


Monopoly Money

Interview with Charlotte Observer. — How much of a concern are the upcoming CBA and TV contracts for a possible buyer of an NFL franchise?  The strength of sports union varies inversely with the length of the CBA. Largely because of the relatively short careers of its players (3.3 years), the NFLPA is by far…

Posted by on March 23, 2018 in National Football League


League of Ordinary Gentlemen

Interview with Crains Business NY. NFL Economics Stat Pack.  Clearly there are threats to the NFL’s business model as it now stands. Rights costs are generally out of synch with ratings and ad revenue, and the dangers of CTE could push young players and their parents away from the game in the coming years. My…

Posted by on March 8, 2018 in National Football League


Goldman Goes Global

Interview with Dutch Newspaper,  Algemeen Dagblad (AD Netherlands) Below is the Feyenoord Stadium deal as best I can gather from the internet compared to the most recent NFL stadium deal in Las Vegas for the Oakland Raiders. Goldman Sachs was also the original lead bank on the Raiders deal but pulled out probably due to internal…

Posted by on March 7, 2018 in UEFA Football


Devil in the Details

Interview with Austin Biz Journal. MLS Stadium Deals Does the $400 million ‘community benefit’ impact over the club’s first 25 years seem plausible given other MLS stadium impacts? What supplemental information from the team/MLS would be needed to determine an economic impact? This is impossible to tell without seeing the numbers. Impact studies usually if…

Posted by on March 5, 2018 in Major League Soccer


Yum Center Boondoggle

Interview with Louisville Courier-Journal. I’m trying to get a sense of whether Louisville’s financing plan for its arena is similar to/out of line with what has been done with other arenas. Kentucky’s auditor noted a year or so ago that ¾ of the arena’s revenue comes from taxpayers, through either TIF proceeds or a yearly…

Posted by on February 21, 2018 in NCAA Basketball


Checkers or Chess

Interview with Arizona Republic. A state bill here in AZ that would have Arizona join a national compact forbidding the use of taxpayer money for new professional sports facilities or renovations to existing ones. The compact would not take effect until 24 other states adopted it, the goal being that sports teams could no longer…

Posted by on February 12, 2018 in National Football League


Super Bowl High

Interview with Philadelphia Biz Report.  I am hoping to get a comment from you on what (finally) winning a Super Bowl will do for the valuation of the Philadelphia Eagles. In the short run, NFL values are a simple function of market size and the certainty of cash flow from luxury seat cash cow venues….

Posted by on February 5, 2018 in National Football League


All-Star Gambit

Interview with Charlotte Biz Journal. I’m writing about the one-year mark before the NBA All-Star Game is played here in Charlotte. The impact estimates are between $60 million and $100 million and I’m fairly sure you have questioned the credibility of such estimates. My questions for you: what do you think a more realistic value…

Posted by on February 5, 2018 in National Basketball Association

Pats logo

Pay Me Now or Pay Me Later

Interview with NY Daily News. 1. Tom Brady is widely regarded as the best player in history at the most important position in all of sports. Yet over 18 seasons, he’s only been the highest-paid QB in the NFL one time (according to salary cap hit). And in six of the past seven seasons, as…

Posted by on February 4, 2018 in National Football League


Mobile Will Be Fine

Interview with Plenty has been written about and discussed on how relocations are often not a bad thing for the losing cities, but what about minor league relocations? Are these often a bad deal for the winning cities because of the expectations of economic development and synergy that supposedly accompanies a new stadium? Or,…

Posted by on February 1, 2018 in Major League Baseball


Keep Pounding Carolina

Interview with Charlotte Observer. Keep pounding, Carolina. Given the current ownership structure of the Panthers and ongoing renovations (and lease agreements) at BOA, the new majority ownership partner will probably be from or have strong financial ties to sweet home Carolina, and the Panthers are not likely to engage a credible franchise-relocation stadium-extortion game for…

Posted by on January 29, 2018 in National Football League


Golden Knights Rising

Interview with Bleacher Report. Are you surprised by the fan support this year? In the past, you’ve referred to Vegas as a “sham” market. Obviously the attendance success shouldn’t change the economic makeup of the city, but do you still stick by this or is there more heft behind them than you originally thought? Should…

Posted by on January 24, 2018 in National Hockey League


Panthers Partners

Interview with Charlotte Observer. I am looking at the limited partners who are part of the ownership group with Jerry Richardson and explaining how these partnerships can work. My understanding is that Jerry clearly runs the show, although these partners still own a significant stake. I was wondering if you might have thoughts on how…

Posted by on December 26, 2017 in National Football League


Rest Easy Carolina

Interview with Charlotte Biz Journal.  Mike Ozanian of Forbes tells us the current NFL franchise market is soft with 3 to 8 franchises either on the market or coming soon. One fourth of the NFL being placed on the block is a stretch even if league ownership is rapidly aging, but I would agree with…

Posted by on December 18, 2017 in National Football League


NFL in Mexico

Interview with NY Times. what makes mexico tempting and worthy of at least trying games there (after a gap of several years since 2005). I understand the NFL wants to grow but what factors in Mexico make that worthy of testing and what financial dividends might there be? There are already more NFL fans in…

Posted by on November 17, 2017 in National Football League


Too Much TV

Interview with Milwaukee Journal Sentenel.   Why have NFL revenues increased so much faster than those of the corporate sector as a whole? The NFL is a natural cartel that exerts major monopoly power over its die-hard fans, media outlets and general taxpayers. By artificially limiting the number of franchises the League is able to maximize…

Posted by on November 4, 2017 in National Football League


Semi-Pro Money Machine

Interview with Louisville Biz First. I’m wondering about the potential economic impact to the city and university after what has befallen the university of Louisville’s basketball program. Any thoughts? Usually a D1 college basketball program has little or no impact on the local economy one way or the other, but in the case of University…

Posted by on September 28, 2017 in NCAA Basketball


Pyramid Scheme

Interview with ESPN FC.  What’s the optimal size of the league for the number of teams? In terms of supply and demand and market support, should it keep expanding? This is a trick question, because there are two different league expansion optima. The first is based on the league size that would maximize internal total…

Posted by on September 11, 2017 in Major League Soccer


Stone Cold Money

Interview with Houston Chronicle.  Most of the increase in NBA values across the board is the anticipation in the tripling of rights fees in the new media rights deals with ESPN and Turner 2016-25. When TV rights went from $29 million to 81.25 million per club the values of the clubs all increased by as…

Posted by on September 5, 2017 in National Basketball Association


Great Divide

Interview with Deadspin.  Deadspin XL / Deadspin growth / Growth XL The Brown family and the Bengals have long made it well-known that there’s a revenue divide between the NFL’s large-market and small-market teams. Even now, when revenues are through the roof thanks to the league’s national TV-rights deal, Troy Blackburn says the smaller markets have a…

Posted by on August 18, 2017 in National Football League


St. Louis v. NFL

Interview with Bloomberg News Is this suit unique/unusual in the history of litigation over NFL franchise moves? No, the City of Cleveland successfully sued the NFL after the relocation of the relocation of the original Browns to Baltimore Ravens in 1996. In the relocation extortion case the NFL settled with the City of Cleveland by…

Posted by on July 12, 2017 in National Football League


Perfect Balance

Interview with FOX Business. Hoping you can send over a few thoughts via email for a quick piece comparing the World Series ratings to the NFL’s current struggles. -Are strong World Series ratings (despite overall ratings slowdown in sports) evidence that live events are still a major draw? Yes, MLB has found the optimal competitive…

Posted by on July 6, 2017 in Major League Baseball

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