The Haslam Era has begun. No more Holmgren, add a dome. Ok, well I thought it was cute but in all seriousness, James Arthur Haslam III is officially the new owner of the Cleveland Browns. So, what does that mean for die-hard Dawg Pound supporters?
Here’s a recap of the week so far in Cleveland. On Sunday, the Browns beat the Bengals for their first win of the season, upgrading them from the “Worst Team in the NFL” to “Tied for the Worst Team in the NFL” with Kansas City both with a record of 1-5. In Chicago on Tuesday, the team owners unanimously approved the sale of the Browns to Jimmy Haslam for $1 billion. Shortly after that announcement was made, it was also announced that Browns team president Mike Holmgren would be out and former Eagles President Joe Banner would be taking over as CEO of the Browns organization.
Today is Thursday, so far, nothing has happened in Browns town, but the day is still young. Right now it looks like Pat Shurmur (whom Holmgren hired) and his staff are safe at least for the rest of the season but, as all coaches should be, he will be reevaluated at the end of the season.
With the Haslam Era comes new talks about a dome or retractable roof or something being added to the stadium to make it useful for more then the few Browns home games and other summer and fall exhibitions it holds (like special event high school games). In watching various news stations out of Cleveland, a proposal from a company involved in the stadium construction in 1998, they’ve devised a geodesic dome. It’s made of glass triangles connected by carbon fiber and fits over the dome like I would use a butter dish to catch a spider crawling across my floor. EXCEPT the dome would sit a few stories above the ground, so it provides no heat or air condition, just protection from the snow. How would this make it any more usable when its -20 below zero in January on Lake Erie? I know I wouldn’t go sit somewhere cold even if I wasn’t getting snowed on. It’s said to be a much more inexpensive way to cover the stadium, but it seems like a waste of money, but that’s just me. Fun fact: Currently there are nine NFL stadiums with either a retractable roof or a full dome.
So what will the Haslam Era bring to Cleveland? Only time will tell. As a Cleveland radio DJ said earlier today, “Haslam has owned the Browns for a day and still no Super Bowl trophy.” Clearly Cleveland is getting impatient. Maybe this year is our year, and if not this year, maybe next year, or the year after that.