Los Angeles might be the most difficult city in the world to be a professional football team in.
Currently home to both the Rams and newly relocated Chargers, LA sports fans have scores of options when it comes to where to put their money. The city is home to eleven professional sports franchises in total, with multiple MLB and NBA organizations, a professional soccer team and that’s before you begin to consider the top-tier college programs in the area.
With a story that dates back to their 1936 beginnings in Cleveland, Ohio the Rams are a team with a long and dynamic history. Last year was their best season in recent memory, so how can the team continue this momentum into the 2019 season?
Enter the New LA Coliseum
Los Angeles has been home to the Rams twice in that long history, however, their most recent stint in LA only began in 2016. So while the Rams aren’t as new to LA as the Chargers, they’re still coming out of some of the initial growing pains of landing in a new home. With a few successful seasons under their belt, the Ram’s current home turf at Exposition Park in the Los Angeles Coliseum will receive a $315 million renovation that will reduce the number of seats and bring onsite facilities into competition with the latest parks around the nation. Ram’s leadership expects that a better overall experience will cover the revenue lost from the 15,500 seat downsizing.
A look at the stadium from above reveals a vast stretch of earth at the moment, but more than 350 workers and two cranes are working six days a week to ensure the project completes before the Ram’s season opener. Fans won’t have to look hard to find the competition thanks to the Charger’s soon-to-be home at Los Angeles Stadium, slated for completion in 2020 in Inglewood. With fewer people attending games, the hope is that lines will move more quickly and fans will be able to better take advantage of luxuries from vendors.
How can they get new fans?
Fans tend to come out of the woodwork when a team is doing well. We saw that last season when the Rams made it to the Super Bowl. However, there’s a big difference between winning it all and coming in second. No big parade, no championship gear and memorabilia, and no national spotlight for the rest of the offseason. So what can the team do to make people want to cheer them on?
The short answer is to focus on their superstars. This goes beyond quarterback Jared Goff and extends to Todd Gurley and Aaron Donald. Their faces need to be everywhere, taking cues from teams that put larger-than-life images of their stars everywhere. New player-inspired graphics will be joined by the USC-focused Scholarship tower, which will play host to premium seating, a rooftop bar, and lounge area and 24 premium suites that Ram faithful will be able to purchase for years-on-end at prices that range well into the millions.
In keeping with what has become a tradition for NFL and other professional franchises, the re-vamped Exposition Park will now be associated with Los Angeles’ own United Airlines under the name United Airlines Memorial Coliseum. The new park will soon get its chance in the spotlight as the venue for the 2028 Olympic games track and field events and also home of the opening and closing ceremonies for the 2028 games. If all of the new amenities don’t serve to help attendance, maybe a discount on tickets to the Olympics will.