"To sit back and say winning is going to cure everything — not in this market."
- Mark Lamping
As you may have guessed, Mark Lamping's comments about winning not being a cure-all were a bit off base. The Jaguars' president, knowingly or unknowingly, fired shots at the local Jacksonville fan base by saying that winning would not cure the Jaguars' local revenue issues.
Every year there is rhetoric from the Jaguars that essentially states the team isn't sustainable in Jacksonville. At the annual state of the franchise, Lamping and company provide statistics that show their progress or lack thereof in the local revenue department. The organization is transparent about how they're trying to build more local revenue and make Jacksonville a sustainable long term home for the Jaguars.
All of that is great.
But to come out and directly claim that winning won't "cure everything" is a big whiff.
The Jaguars organization, under Shad Khan's direction, has given the city of Jacksonville exactly one winning season since he took over the ownership prior to the 2012 season. ONE. The Jaguars have won more games than they lost once during Khan's eight seasons as owner.
In 2018, the season after the Jaguars went 10-6 and made it all the way to AFC Championship, the Jaguars' home attendance spiked. It jumped from 21st in 2017 all the way to 15th in 2018. It took EXACTLY one winning season to see a MASSIVE jump in home attendance. This, despite being the second smallest market in football.
Imagine if the Jaguars were competitive for two or three consecutive years. What about a five year run of making the playoffs every other season? What would that do for home attendance?
The point is, Mark Lamping made a wildly off base assertion about the support that this team has from its local fans. And the only evidence that actually exists shows that winning does cure everything for the Jaguars and their ticket sales. Maybe try winning for a prolonged period before making blanket statements about this market.
Maybe try providing some sort of shade for fans at home games when temperatures are in the 90s or even 100+.
Create a permanent fix for the lazily moving lines at the entry gates.
Make Daily's Place a better game day experience, perhaps by (at the very least) showing a stream of the game that doesn't lag it's from reddit?
Fix the concessions, which are sorely lacking as compared to other professional sports franchises.
Create a more fan-friendly environment inside the concourses — perhaps an interactive experience where fans get to go through the annals of the franchises' history.
And isn't it obvious that making such a strong allegation about the local market would alienate fans and lead to even more people not renewing season tickets in 2020?
This organization's lack of awareness is alarming. Not to mention their inability to build a successful football club.
Maybe they just don't care?
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