Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Rush Limbaugh Bids on the St. Louis Rams [J. Mark English]

LBelieve it or not, but long time football fan, as well as conservative talk show host, Rush Limbaugh, may be the next owner of the St. Louis Rams.

Here is more from Breitbart.com with Jim Salter of the Associated Press:

The lowly Rams have someone who loves them.

Conservative talk radio host Rush Limbaugh said Tuesday he is teaming up with St. Louis Blues owner Dave Checketts in a bid to buy the Rams, owners of the NFL's longest losing streak at 14 and just 5-31 since 2007.

In a statement, Limbaugh declined to discuss details, citing a confidentiality agreement with Goldman Sachs, the investment firm hired by the family of former Rams owner Georgia Frontiere to review assets of her estate, including the NFL team.

Limbaugh also declined to discuss other partners that might be involved in the bid, but said he and Checketts would operate the team.

"Dave Checketts and I have made a bid to buy the Rams and we are continuing the process," Limbaugh said.

Forbes magazine has estimated the Rams franchise has a value of $929 million.

Frontiere's children, Chip Rosenbloom and Lucia Rodriguez, inherited 60 percent of the Rams when their mother died in January 2008. Billionaire Stan Kroenke of Columbia, Mo., owns the remaining 40 percent. It wasn't clear if the Limbaugh/Checketts bid was for 100 percent of the Rams or just the share owned by Rosenbloom and Rodriguez.

"Our strategic review of our ownership of the Rams continues," Rosenbloom said in a statement released late Monday. "We will make an announcement upon the completion of the process."

NFL spokesman Greg Aiello declined comment. Calls seeking comment from Checketts were not returned.

Limbaugh is a native of Cape Girardeau, Mo., about 100 miles south of St. Louis. He's so popular among conservatives—fans of his show call themselves "dittoheads"—that he has been called by some the voice of the Republican Party.

Limbaugh, who lives and works in Palm Beach, Fla., once worked for the Kansas City Royals and is an avid sports fan.

In 2003, Limbaugh worked briefly on ESPN's NFL pregame show, but resigned after saying Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb was overrated because the media wanted to see a black quarterback succeed.

Checketts, 53, and his Sports Capital Partners and Towerbrook Capital Partners purchased the Blues in 2006 from Bill and Nancy Laurie. The Blues have been gradually rebuilt under his leadership and made the playoffs last season for the first time since 2004.

Checketts first approached Rosenbloom in early 2009 about possibly buying the Rams. Eric Gelfand, a spokesman for Checketts, said in June that Checketts had put together a group consisting of local and outside investors.

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