Art Modell Denied Entry Into Pro Football Hall of Fame

The Butler

Well-known member
Should it? Yes.

Will it? No. Anyone not selected today is still eligible to be elected in future years.
 

cabezadecaballo

Well-known member
In all seriousness, there was nothing positive that Art did that wasn’t more a function of the times than any stroke of genius. Jerry Jones basically pimp-slapped Art aside for the NFL to cut the FOX deal and start making really serious money.
 

tom 48

Well-known member
Mr. Modell should be in for sure, and Cleveland should be ashamed of the way they ran him off.

Give Municipal Stadium the same funding you did the Cavs and Indians, and he never would have been forced to leave.

And you would have Super Bowl championships too.
The story behind the "move."

 

bedevil

Well-known member
Mr. Modell should be in for sure, and Cleveland should be ashamed of the way they ran him off.

Give Municipal Stadium the same funding you did the Cavs and Indians, and he never would have been forced to leave.

And you would have Super Bowl championships too.
He was forced to leave because he was a lousy businessman. He was forced to leave because he was staring down the barrel of bankruptcy. The Gateway Project was a convenient excuse. What he did was no better than the Irsays pulling up the moving trucks in the cover of night to skulk out of Baltimore and head to Indianapolis. What he did was take a loan from his wife to pay a free agent wide receiver because, as the owner of a franchise that packed 80,00 people into Municipal Stadium for 7-8 Sundays for 35 years, he couldn't afford him. What he also did was fire the two greatest coaches in the history of the NFL. If you don't believe that offsets his inclusion in the development of Monday Night Football, well, I can't help you. It's quite a resume' he fashioned, and it's one that doesn't deserve election to the Pro Football Hall of Fame, and I think the results of the Centennial Committee vote reflects that.
 

tom 48

Well-known member
Mr. Modell should be in for sure, and Cleveland should be ashamed of the way they ran him off.

Give Municipal Stadium the same funding you did the Cavs and Indians, and he never would have been forced to leave.

And you would have Super Bowl championships too.
He was offered a new one and refused.

 

fortfan

Active member
Modell should never be in the Hall of Fame...BUT...just maybe letting him in would release the curse the Browns have been under since the move????
 

cabezadecaballo

Well-known member
He was offered a new one and refused.

As I recall it, Modell was offered to be part of a 72,000 seat domed stadium to be shared with the Indians on equal footing. At that time, Modell was selling 82,000 seats at Cleveland Municipal Stadium and was taking total advantage of the Indians in controlling Municipal Stadium, skimming a share of their gate as the controlling interest and providing atrocious amenities. Art was the Indians’ slumlord, enabled by the City contract.

Modell did not want to give up 10,000 tickets a game, and like the atrocious businessman he was, began an extensive remodel of the loges at Municipal Stadium financed at an exorbitant interest-rate - just because he was jealous of the other owners. No patience to work a better deal with the City instead. These remodel loan payments were what was breaking him.

Meanwhile, tax abatement was ending on the Colosseum in Richfield, the Indians ballpark would obviously be smaller than a "football, too" mixed use stadium, and the Gateway Development Corporation had already accumulated enough land to build both an arena and a ballpark. Why not take the opportunity to get 40+ games of NBA basketball downtown when Art backed out of the project ? Gateway's Board wasn't going to let Art playing chicken kill the whole project. Reboot, with the Cavs instead of the Browns. Then, of course, Modell started moaning, “What about me?!?!”

A friend was involved in an extensive off-season survey of the old Municipal Stadium building, including digging down around the footings a dozen feet deep or more in several locations. The building was a WPA project built on a landfill. Municipal Stadium was literally falling apart. Idiot Art broke his own back financially, and he was polishing a turd. He was an idiot with the gift of gab and a great desire to look like a good guy all the time. He threw money around and played the role, but all he was really any good at was self-promotion.

Once the City made the poor decision to rebuild a football stadium on the same site, that guaranteed three dead years. The team either had to shut down, relocate, or play in temporary home stadium.

We could have built a new stadium, entering from where Cleveland Black Oxide is, on the top of the valley where the container rail yard is, but the Millers and Ratners of Forest City Development - Mayor White’s OWNERS - would not permit it. They demanded a new stadium be built on land that they owned - more jealous greed. White’s only out was to stay on the same site, and Al Lerner saw that as an opportunity to go from minority owner to sole owner and pushed the deal that the new team ended up with.
 
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gobluetom

Well-known member
You Clevelanders don't know how good you had it with Mr. Modell.

Yes, he made a few mistakes, firing Paul Brown, sticking around Cleveland a few years too many, but overall he loved Cleveland and brought very exciting football to your town, especially in the 1960, and 1980's.

Things haven't been the same for the Browns since he left, and is further proof of the ineptitude of the Cleveland fans for letting him leave.
 

Impalaman

Member
You Clevelanders don't know how good you had it with Mr. Modell.

Yes, he made a few mistakes, firing Paul Brown, sticking around Cleveland a few years too many, but overall he loved Cleveland and brought very exciting football to your town, especially in the 1960, and 1980's.

Things haven't been the same for the Browns since he left, and is further proof of the ineptitude of the Cleveland fans for letting him leave.
There were reports that as a key member of the NFL expansion committee that Art took the proposal into a room to read and came out with drool flowing from his lips. Why didn't Baltimore get chosen as an expansion team, even they offered the best deal? Maybe because a key member of the expansion committee wanted it for himself. Conflict of interest ? And speaking of ineptitude, Art couldn't make the such a great deal from Baltimore work financially and had to sell the team.
 

gobluetom

Well-known member
There were reports that as a key member of the NFL expansion committee that Art took the proposal into a room to read and came out with drool flowing from his lips. Why didn't Baltimore get chosen as an expansion team, even they offered the best deal? Maybe because a key member of the expansion committee wanted it for himself. Conflict of interest ? And speaking of ineptitude, Art couldn't make the such a great deal from Baltimore work financially and had to sell the team.
Of course you have a bias against him, he left your city for greener pastures.

The way you Clevelanders talk about him, you make him sound like the second coming of Tony Bennett.
 

clarkgriswold

Well-known member
Of course you have a bias against him, he left your city for greener pastures.

The way you Clevelanders talk about him, you make him sound like the second coming of Tony Bennett.
Have you been to Baltimore?

One thing I've never understood in that whole deal is how Al Lerner facilitated it then jumped in to take over the new Browns with little or no criticism.

Art's the only guy I know who couldn't make huge money off of an NFL team.
 
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