Posted July 21, 2015
Don Muret - The Sporting News -
The historic Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum could go through a name change in the coming years.
USC, which has run the 92-year-old stadium since 2013, has hired Fox Sports to sell naming rights for the facility, home to the Trojans' football team.
The stadium, originally built for the 1932 Olympics, is in dire need of upgrades and the school is planning a major renovation that could run $250 million or more and include some high-end suites, depending on the final design. The revenue generated from naming rights would help Southern Cal pay for the privately-funded improvements.
Considering the stadium's iconic status, a naming rights deal could be done for the field itself without affecting the name of the building, according to Fox Sports officials. About two years ago, the University of California signed naming rights for the field at Memorial Stadium following a $321 million renovation of the facility.
After SportsBusiness Journal first reported the deal, which apparently "panicked" USC fans, according to one story, stadium manager Joe Furin said the words "Memorial Stadium" will remain untouched as part of any naming rights agreement.
The experts who sell naming rights for a living say naming rights for the stadium proper could generate anywhere from $3 million to $7 million annually, depending on several factors, including the proposal to build a new MLS stadium next door on the site of the Los Angeles Sports Arena.
Starting next year, the Coliseum could also serve as a temporary home for NFL teams relocating to Los Angeles and building new stadiums in the market. It's a variable that could also impact the value of naming rights for the stadium.