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The Case for Adelaide.....

Messages
8,480
Wouldn't make the cut if it wasn't a flogging,
We have a northern eagles game there too
I’m sure mate. It was the first of 2 x 50 point games against the Rams in 3 rounds… nightmare.

Two things happened after that which helped turn the tide… mid season

Reddy Sacked, and Lance Steps in. Combined with … Graham Appo joining the club. The first half of 98 was a nightmare…
 
Messages
8,480
The Parramatta Rams..


NRL 2021: Denis Fitzgerald reveals why he wanted to rename the Parramatta Eels​

Former long-time Parramatta CEO, Denis Fitzgerald, never liked the Eels logo, revealing he devised a plan to scrap the nickname for good.

Former long-term chief executive Denis Fitzgerald has broken a 30-year silence to reveal his controversial plan to scrap the Eels’ nickname and rename the club the Parramatta Rams.

Just days before Parramatta’s knockout final against Penrith, Fitzgerald admitted he had discussed the possible name change during the early 1990s with directors and senior club management.


A big fan of US sport, Fitzgerald had long admired the Rams – an NFL franchise run out of St Louis and Los Angeles during the 1990s. Describing the response from directors as “lukewarm”, Fitzgerald elected against taking the proposal to the board for final approval.

“The Rams’ nickname was monosyllabic and more aggressive. I was looking for a mascot that was easy to recognise for people,” Fitzgerald said.

——

There’s more but couldn’t copy it into this post.

If they did indeed become the Rams, wonder if Adelaide would have stuck with the Aces… or gone something else - given the Aces was canned as they were looking at something with more presence..
 
Messages
817
Yep, it’s me beating the Adelaide Rams Drum. Bit of a read here for you folk....

Having moved here last year, I’ve been genuinely surprised at how many people have an interest and approached me about League (usually when I’m wearing a Dragons jacket, hat or one of my old retro-wear pieces – like my prized Gold Coast Seagulls Jacket or Adelaide Rams Hat), and also the number of people I’ve seen getting around in NRL gear.

And it got me thinking. Is there a strong case to bring back Adelaide to the NRL at some point?

Well I now believe there is a strong case. Or at least stronger than many might think.

If I was back in Sydney a few years ago and someone suggested this, I’d have laughed so expect you might too. Undoubtedly there’s some bias around wanting an Adelaide team. But pushing any bias aside, I’ve done a bit of research. So, read on to open your mind, pick holes in it, or just fill in some time.

Firstly, add Adelaide into the expansion list as below.
  • Brisbane V2
  • New Zealand V2
  • Perth
  • Central Qld
  • Central Coast
  • Adelaide
If an expansion team can’t generate ROI soon after establishment, then in these times we live in there’s no point continuing the conversation. But rather than bore everyone with financial jargon and stats… break it down into the following areas, which all are the major drivers on a P&L.

1 - Establishment & Ongoing Operational Costs.
2 - Stadium
3 - Sponsorship/Advertising.
4 - Membership and Attendance

Generally, establishment & operational costs will be similar for all. But aspects where costs may differ are Travel, and Stadium operations.

So for Adelaide??

Stadium

There’s two. Adelaide Oval and Hindmarsh Stadium. Let’s take it we want a rectangular stadium – Hindmarsh – which is getting an upgrade to seat 22,000 thanks to winning the 2023 Womens’ World Cup.

Operating Costs for a stadium this size would be on the lesser side compared to bigger stadiums. While they could also co-habit with A-League Side Adelaide FC. Cohabitation will also incentivise owners to invest in future upgrades with more games per year hosted.

Stadium Quality?

It’s small but I’ve never been to a ground where all seats are so on-top of the action. There’s not a bad seat in the house, the stands are so close to the playing arena. That is one of the great appeals of league – to be close to the action. And with the upgrades to come for 2023, stadium quality will only improve.

Stadium Access?

Adelaide is the easiest major city to get around by car. It’s also only a 9-iron away from the city centre, and easily accessed by Public Transport.

Travel Costs.

Teams will have to travel all over the place but the majority of travel will be in / out of Sydney given the number of Sydney Clubs. And Flights costs will be the differentiator here.

So for Adelaide?

Adelaide is a 2hr flight time to Sydney. Brisbane is 90 minutes, Melbourne 80 minutes, Perth is 4 hrs into Sydney, and 5 hours leaving Sydney. NZ is just under 4 hours (depending on which city). And costs are relative to these times.

If comparing with Perth, the flight costs pp is close to Double the cost for Adelaide. Consider that for a minimum travelling squad of 30 and that is very sizeable (Sorry Perth Red!). Adelaide is far cheaper than Perth or NZ.

But in return… when Clubs have to fly interstate to a game with an “expansion team”. Adelaide has direct flights to all city centres. The only other expansion candidate that can do this is Brisbane. Of course this may change in time.

Sponsorship & Advertising

Tricky one. You could compare by city sizes in terms of revenue expectations. In which Case Adelaide sits in the middle of all others. Noting revenue would be expected higher for larger population bases - for the club and for TV viewerships. In the case of Perth & Adelaide, these will bring "new eyeballs" to the game... where other heartland areas may already have their TV's on Rugby League. With new eyeballs comes increased ratings, advertising revenue and overall financial strengthening of the NRL.

Membership and Supporter Base.

How to best could you gauge this?

You could go on heartland states versus “frontiers” like Perth, Adelaide etc. If going by Population bases, Adelaide is 3rd behind Brisbane & Perth. And way ahead of the others. We could also go on a comparison of past history and current stats.

Once a year the Storm play the Roosters at the Adelaide Oval. Over the last 3 seasons these games have drawn over 16,000, 18,000 and 21,000 fans. Not bad for a state that has no firm Rugby League presence or club to follow.

And the Rams… first season, 1997. But when the SL war was over, Adelaide were “sacrificed” and entered 1998 with no future beyond it. So with the rams here was a team that;
  • Was hastily cobbled together for the SL comp.
  • Drew over drew over 27,000 people to their first match
  • Averaged over 15k crowds in its first season.
  • With the exception of their 2nd last game of the season (while running 2nd last), had all crowds over 10,000 people
  • Had no established quality players apart from Kerrod Walters.
  • Only won 6 games all year.
Further to their crowds…
  • Their average crowd was the 6th highest of all clubs across both competitions.
  • Of the established Sydney teams only Parramatta's average was higher.
Granted the SL war affected crowds that year, so then comparing it to the 1996 season..
  • Only the Warriors, Broncos, Knights and Roosters had higher home crowd averages than this.
And with 1995 (when the "SL War" hadn't blown up yet)
  • Only the Warriors, Broncos, Raiders, Knights, Crushers and Cowboys had higher average crowds.
  • The Warriors Crushers and Cowboys were all new teams but in "RL Heartlands".
  • The Broncos Raiders and Knights were one-city teams and highly successful during that time.
  • The Rams in 97 had higher crowd averages than all the Sydney teams of 1995.
And their average crowd back then in 1997, with all this considered, is higher than the majority of clubs in last years’ competition (given Covid in 2020).

When the noose went around their neck before 1998, they naturally suffered on the field and off it. The party was over before it really got a chance to get into full swing, cops knocking on the door telling them to shut it down.

So..

It’s safe to say that an Adelaide team, at the very least, would average a crowd of 16k. However, given more exposure to RL since 1997, a bigger, better rectangular stadium, and the high proportion of expats from the east coast (like me) who now live here….20k a game is not an unreasonable expectation. That’s bigger than most club averages in the current competition (pre-covid).

The other thing to a lesser extent is that away fans can fly in and out of Adelaide over the weekend and support their team much easier than other teams (barring Brisbane). In on a Friday/out on Sunday Night. Hard to do in other areas.

The thing that underpins all of these assumptions is that they get the front office set up right, and a competitive team – which again would need to be a given for any expansion club...


End Pt 1....
________________________

Part 2... COMPARISONS TO OTHER EXPANSION TEAMS (next post)...

Didn't read your post (no disrespect).

Haven't read the thread.

Nonetheless, f**king A let's expand and bring back Adelaide!!!
 

joshreading

Moderator
Staff member
Messages
1,718
How do you think a four game a year team... Southern Sharks could be received?

I think one of the greatest obstacles to a number of Sydney teams is they are stuck demographically.

Sharks are a marketable brand, adaptable and have a connection to Adelaide culture (for better or worse).

A small investment by the NRL, let's say 2 million per year for Adelaide operations could open a big door with wider engagement with a potential of one million more casual fans, new corporates interested in a wider profile than the shire etc

With an initial four games Southern Sharks could maintain their base in Sydney and play games against lesser drawing clubs that may still work in Adelaide (eg. Warriors, Melbourne, NQ Cowboys, Titans etc?
 

siv

First Grade
Messages
5,085
Cronulla and Adelaide while a good match

Just have not jelled at fan level

But Easts have for some reason. Maybe its the colours or the Melbourne rivalry
 

MugaB

Bench
Messages
3,743
Cronulla and Adelaide while a good match

Just have not jelled at fan level

But Easts have for some reason. Maybe its the colours or the Melbourne rivalry
Maybe its because its a home game they take to Adelaide almost once a year, and a pretty good rival to take to South Australia being Melbourne, where a traditional Afl hate for Victorians is held
 
Messages
2,580
The Parramatta Rams..


NRL 2021: Denis Fitzgerald reveals why he wanted to rename the Parramatta Eels​

Former long-time Parramatta CEO, Denis Fitzgerald, never liked the Eels logo, revealing he devised a plan to scrap the nickname for good.

Former long-term chief executive Denis Fitzgerald has broken a 30-year silence to reveal his controversial plan to scrap the Eels’ nickname and rename the club the Parramatta Rams.

Just days before Parramatta’s knockout final against Penrith, Fitzgerald admitted he had discussed the possible name change during the early 1990s with directors and senior club management.


A big fan of US sport, Fitzgerald had long admired the Rams – an NFL franchise run out of St Louis and Los Angeles during the 1990s. Describing the response from directors as “lukewarm”, Fitzgerald elected against taking the proposal to the board for final approval.

“The Rams’ nickname was monosyllabic and more aggressive. I was looking for a mascot that was easy to recognise for people,” Fitzgerald said.

——

There’s more but couldn’t copy it into this post.

If they did indeed become the Rams, wonder if Adelaide would have stuck with the Aces… or gone something else - given the Aces was canned as they were looking at something with more presence..
Fitzgerald also considered a few merger options as he thought the Eel logo was not marketable

Norths - Parramatta Bears

Balmain - Parramatta Tigers
 
Messages
8,480
Maybe its because its a home game they take to Adelaide almost once a year, and a pretty good rival to take to South Australia being Melbourne, where a traditional Afl hate for Victorians is held
Yep they hate Victorians in afl but not the Storm. Big afl state of course but aside from people like me who’ve brought a team with me, Storm are the ones locals tend to support - loosely or otherwise..
 
Messages
8,480
I could be misremembering, but I vaguely remember a Parra Dogs merger being thrown around as well.

Might have just been media talk.
Been plenty of them over the years. Hard to keep track of them all. Wouldn’t surprise me if this was in discussions. Would have been an almighty club - two of Sydney’s biggest in combination.
 

The Great Dane

First Grade
Messages
5,072
Been plenty of them over the years. Hard to keep track of them all. Wouldn’t surprise me if this was in discussions. Would have been an almighty club - two of Sydney’s biggest in combination.
Sure, but more than 50% of them were just ideas thrown around in the media that were never seriously considered by the clubs.

Which makes it very hard to keep track of the ones that really had the potential of actually happening, which are by far the most interesting ones.
 
Messages
8,480
Sure, but more than 50% of them were just ideas thrown around in the media that were never seriously considered by the clubs.

Which makes it very hard to keep track of the ones that really had the potential of actually happening, which are by far the most interesting ones.

The ones I remember being “seriously discussed”, .

Dragons Roosters
Rabbitohs Roosters
Eels Tigers
Sharks Dragons
Rabbitohs Dragons

Maybe coz I’m a dragons fan most of these come to mind as they involved my club.

Bears n Sea Eagles was too for a while, ended up happening but we all know the result.

Hindsight is always a beautiful thing but if you could go back to the mid 90’s and reshape the evolution of the Sydney clubs… what mergers (if any) would people suggest would have been best with respect to the competition today…

Id suggest these…

Bulldogs Magpies
Eels Tigers
Dragons Sharks
Rabbitohs Roosters

Move the bears to the central coast. Rest stay as is.

Financials and all that aside, geographically that would have been the best IMO. Pub talk though, didn’t happen and never will, all debatable.

Would have been heartache at the time for fans… but could have many Sydney “megaclubs” right there, rather than the haves and have nots we see today.
 

The Great Dane

First Grade
Messages
5,072
The ones I remember being “seriously discussed”, .

Dragons Roosters
Rabbitohs Roosters
Eels Tigers
Sharks Dragons
Rabbitohs Dragons

Maybe coz I’m a dragons fan most of these come to mind as they involved my club.

Bears n Sea Eagles was too for a while, ended up happening but we all know the result.

Hindsight is always a beautiful thing but if you could go back to the mid 90’s and reshape the evolution of the Sydney clubs… what mergers (if any) would people suggest would have been best with respect to the competition today…

Id suggest these…

Bulldogs Magpies
Eels Tigers
Dragons Sharks
Rabbitohs Roosters

Move the bears to the central coast. Rest stay as is.

Financials and all that aside, geographically that would have been the best IMO. Pub talk though, didn’t happen and never will, all debatable.

Would have been heartache at the time for fans… but could have many Sydney “megaclubs” right there, rather than the haves and have nots we see today.
Crushers/Chargers and Chargers/Mariners were serious as well.

I probably wouldn't advocate any mergers if I could go back and influence the decision. I'd probably just have kicked more of the Sydney clubs out of the comp and had stringent rules on the others licenses.

I'd have gone through every Sydney clubs' business and picked out the 5/6 best placed to be successful moving forward, then kicked the rest to the NSWRL.

Then I would have effectively split Sydney geographically between the 5/6 and mandated in their new NRL licenses that they must meaningfully represent those regions on the ground, in their marketing and branding, and in their junior system, and set out KPI's they must meet in said regions at risk of losing their license.
I would have been zealous about those KPI's and licenses as well, not because I'd want to be, but because I'd have to be to keep things moving forward. You simply couldn't afford to have even one club ignoring them.

So for example, and obviously being a bit simplistic, the Bulldogs might have won one of the licenses, but instead of being Canterbury-Bankstown they'd have been forced to represent all the South West region. Meanwhile the Magpies probably would have ended up as their feeder club in the NSW Cup.

It would have hurt in the short term, but in the mid-long term it would have been the best outcome for the sport as a whole.
 

Perth Red

Immortal
Messages
44,407
Crushers/Chargers and Chargers/Mariners were serious as well.

I probably wouldn't advocate any mergers if I could go back and influence the decision. I'd probably just have kicked more of the Sydney clubs out of the comp and had stringent rules on the others licenses.

I'd have gone through every Sydney clubs' business and picked out the 5/6 best placed to be successful moving forward, then kicked the rest to the NSWRL.

Then I would have effectively split Sydney geographically between the 5/6 and mandated in their new NRL licenses that they must meaningfully represent those regions on the ground, in their marketing and branding, and in their junior system, and set out KPI's they must meet in said regions at risk of losing their license.
I would have been zealous about those KPI's and licenses as well, not because I'd want to be, but because I'd have to be to keep things moving forward. You simply couldn't afford to have even one club ignoring them.

So for example, and obviously being a bit simplistic, the Bulldogs might have won one of the licenses, but instead of being Canterbury-Bankstown they'd have been forced to represent all the South West region. Meanwhile the Magpies probably would have ended up as their feeder club in the NSW Cup.

It would have hurt in the short term, but in the mid-long term it would have been the best outcome for the sport as a whole.
1998 Id have created two leagues, SL and the ARL division 1. Split the 22 clubs into the two leagues based on strength and strategic importance. I wonder what it would now look like??

The proposal in 1994 was to have 4 super clubs in Sydney owned by the existing 12 NSWRL clubs with those 12 clubs keeping their own identity and playing the NSWL division whilst the co-owned super clubs played in SL. (a similar model already proposed by the ARL a couple of years earlier) Wonder what would have happened if the ARL had agreed?

The original SL plan had a 12 team SL with a 20 team comp below it with all the old NSWRL clubs still keeping their brand and owning a share in the new SL clubs.
It was predicted to be:
4 Sydney Super clubs
Newcastle
2 Qlnd clubs
Canberra
Melbourne
Auckland
Adelaide
Perth

A truly national comp!
 

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