California State University East Bay

Raiders owner meets with San Antonio

November 13, 2014

Former San Antonio Mayor Henry Cisneros and other city officials traveled to the Bay Area for a meeting that could be the first step in relocating the franchise to Texas after this season.  Raiders owner Mark Davis told Comcast Sports Bay Area on Friday, “The meeting went great.”

The San Antonio Express-News first reported on Thursday that preliminary results of a survey – partially funded by the Raiders – assessing regional interest for a possible Raiders move would be discussed.  Cisneros told the News Express that the Raiders moving to Texas is a “very clear 50-50 proposition.”

This move could be leverage for ownership to keep the Raiders in Oakland by flirting with Los Angeles, the Raiders home from ’82-’84, and San Antonio, to the point of forcing the city to secure a new stadium deal to keep the team in the East Bay.  The Raiders stadium lease with the Coliseum ends after the 2014 season.

Oakland mayor elect Libby Schaaf said she reached out to the Raiders on Friday, shortly before the San Antonio representatives made their pitch.  In an interview with KQED in the Bay Area, Schaaf said a Raiders executive reassured her that staying in Oakland is the NFL team’s top priority.

Schaaf told KQED that she’d like to keep both the Raiders and Athletics in Oakland, but draws a line when it comes to public subsidy for a new stadium.

“I was born and raised in this city,” Schaaf said. “My parents had season tickets to both [the A’s an Raiders.] Keeping our sports teams is something to keep that great Oakland spirit alive and it is a priority for me. But let me be very clear- I do not believe in spending public dollars in building sports stadiums. That is a line in the sand for me.”


While Oakland officials and Raiders ownership are playing the “he-said, she-said” game, one thing is clear:  The Raiders are making the first moves.  If city officials can’t get a deal done for Oakland, there are city officials in other states that will.

Not everyone feels the Raiders are setting sail for greener pastures, and Bleacher Report’s NFL reporter Jason Cole doesn’t think San Antonio is the place.

“#Raiders move to San Antonio. Mark Davis is being polite, working leverage. Either LA or Oakland,” he tweeted on Friday.

The Raiders are the only football team in the National Football League that shares their stadium with a baseball team, the Oakland Athletics whom signed a 10-year stadium deal to allow the Raiders to demolish the Coliseum to build a new football stadium.

That may be a fantasy now, as it seems through the posturing of both Oakland city officials and Raiders management could lead the winless Raiders from an embarrassing season right out of Oakland.

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