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Dec 15, 2012 7:48pm
Medium lingzi 1454 posts

BALTIMORE Former Baltimore Ravens owner Art Modell died early Thursday, the
longtime NFL stalwart who incurred the wrath of Cleveland fans when he moved the
team from Ohio and admittedly tarnished his own legacy as a civic leader. Brian Cushing Elite Jersey . He was 87. David
Modell said he and his brother, John, were at their fathers side when he “died
peacefully of natural causes.” Modell was among the most important figures in
the NFL as owner of the Cleveland Browns and a league insider. During his four
decades as a team owner, he helped negotiate the NFLs lucrative contracts with
television networks, served as president of the NFL from 1967 to 1969, and
chaired the negotiations for the first the collective bargaining agreement with
the players in 1968. He also was the driving force behind the 1970 contract
between the NFL and ABC to televise games on Monday night. Modell, however, made
one decision that hounded him the rest of his life. He moved the Cleveland
franchise to Baltimore in 1996 and Ohio fans never forgave him for it. “Its a
shame that one decision hurt how some people think of him, because he did so
much good,” said Doug Dieken, a Browns offensive lineman for 14 years.
Practically overnight, the man who was one of Clevelands most notable civic
leaders was a pariah in his own community. “I have a great legacy, tarnished
somewhat by the move,” he said in 1999. “The politicians and the bureaucrats saw
fit to cover their own rear ends by blaming it on me.” The move was also
believed to be the main reason why Modell never made it into the Pro Football
Hall of Fame. He was one of 15 finalists in 2001 and a semifinalist seven times
between 2004 and 2011. The Ravens won their lone Super Bowl in January 2001,
less than a year after Modell sold a minority interest of the team to Steve
Bisciotti. In April 2004, Bisciotti completed purchase of the franchise but left
Modell a 1 per cent share. “He worked alongside Lamar Hunt, Tex Schramm, Well
Mara and Art Rooney, and all of those men are in the Hall of Fame,” former
Browns guard John Wooten said. “He worked with them in all of those meetings. He
was there. It is indeed a shame that he is not in the Hall of Fame.” NFL
Commissioner Roger Goodell praised Modells work within the league as it was
gaining momentum a half century ago. “Art Modells leadership was an important
part of the NFLs success during the leagues explosive growth during the 1960s
and beyond,” Goodell said in a statement. “Art was a visionary who understood
the critical role that mass viewing of NFL games on broadcast television could
play in growing the NFL.” Goodell also appreciated Modells sharp wit. “Arts
skills as an owner and league contributor were matched only by his great sense
of humour,” he tweeted. “Any conversation with Art included laughs.” Modells
Browns were among the best teams of the 1960s, led for a time by legendary
running back Jim Brown. Cleveland won the NFL championship in 1964 — Modells
only title with the Browns — and played in the title game in 1965, 1968 and
1969. But his early years with Cleveland also were marked by controversy when he
fired the teams only coach to that point, Hall of Famer Paul Brown, after the
1962 season. Brown then went on to co-found and coach the Cincinnati Bengals.
Modell said he lost millions of dollars operating the Browns in Cleveland and
cited the state of Marylands financial package, including construction of a $200
million stadium, as his reasons for leaving Ohio. The Baltimore Colts had left
Maryland for Indianapolis in 1984. “This has been a very, very tough road for my
family and me,” Modell said at the time of the Browns move. “I leave my heart
and part of my soul in Cleveland. But frankly, it came down to a simple
proposition: I had no choice.” The cost of the move to Baltimore left him
financially strapped and with no choice but to put in motion the chain of events
that enabled Bisciotti to assume majority ownership. Bisciotti has since poured
millions into the team, financing construction of a lavish practice facility in
Owings Mills, Md. As a tribute, Bisciotti insisted that a huge oil painting of
Modell be hung above the fireplace at the entrance to the complex. “He was my
friend, my mentor. We will miss him so much,” Bisciotti said. ”... How fortunate
I am to have had him teach me about the NFL.” Modell wasnt the kind of owner who
operated his team from an office. He mingled with the players and often watched
every minute of practice. “Art talked with me every day when I played in
Baltimore,” former Ravens tight end Shannon Sharpe said. “He knew everything
about what was going on in my life. He showed real concern. But, it wasnt just
me. He knew the practice squad players names. He treated them the same. He was
out at practice when it was 100 degrees and when the December snows came. I
loved playing for him.” Born June 23, 1925, in Brooklyn, N.Y., Modell dropped
out of high school at age 15 and worked in the Brooklyn Navy Yard cleaning out
the hulls of ships to help out his financially strapped family after the death
of his father. He completed high school in night class, joined the Air Force in
1943, and then enrolled in a television school after World War II. He used that
education to produce one of the first regular daytime television programs before
moving into the advertising business in 1954. A group of friends led by Modell
purchased the Browns in 1961 for $4 million — a figure he called “totally
excessive.” “You get few chances like this,” he said at the time. “To take
advantage of the opportunity, you must have money and friends with more.”
Modells work as a civic leader included serving on the board of directors of
several companies, including the Ohio Bell Telephone Co., Higbee Co. and 20th
Century-Fox Film Corp. Modell and his wife, Patricia, continued their charity
work in Baltimore, donating millions to The Seed School of Maryland, a boarding
school for disadvantaged youths; Johns Hopkins Hospital; and the Kennedy Krieger
Institute. The couple also gave $3.5 million to the Lyric, which was renamed the
Patricia & Art Modell Performing Arts Center at The Lyric. Patricia, his
wife of 42 years, died last year. “Poppy was a special man who was loved by his
sons, his daughter-in-law Michel, and his six grandchildren,” David Modell said.
“Moreover, he was adored by the entire Baltimore community for his kindness and
generosity. And, he loved Baltimore.” Art Modell hoped one day the people of
Cleveland would remember him for what he accomplished there. Long after the
move, Modell pointed out that Cleveland ultimately got the new stadium he
coveted, and that the expansion version of the Browns could draw on the history
he helped create. “I think that part of my legacy is I left the colours, the
name and the records in Cleveland,” Modell said. “The fans in Cleveland were
loyal and supportive. They lived and died with me every Sunday for 35 years.” J.J. Watt Womens Jersey . Led by quarterback
Kevin Glenn, the Stamps are looking to employ the same strategy against the
Toronto Argonauts that helped them to a 35-29 victory over the B. J.J. Watt Nike Jersey . Hes sorry about it.
Theyre not. McCutchen homered twice, James McDonald took a no-hitter into the
sixth inning and struck out a career-high 11, and the Pittsburgh Pirates beat
the Nationals 5-3 on Thursday night. http://www.houstontexansgears.com/kevin-walter-jersey/
. Ukraine coach Oleg Blokhin rated the chances of his captain being fit to play
at “50-50” and said he would only decide shortly before kickoff on Tuesday. “We
are doing everything possible to make him play,” Blokhin said through an
interpreter. Bradie James Jersey . Lamar Neagle and
Patrice Bernier scored second-half goals and Montreal extended its winning
streak to four games Saturday night with a 3-1 victory over the league-leading
San Jose Earthquakes at Saputo Stadium. Arian Foster Red Jersey .168 inches to be
exact. In the closest pole duel in Indianapolis 500 history, Team Penske sent
points leader Will Power onto the track with two minutes left in the Pole Day
shootout—a shrewd move that prevented three Andretti drivers from taking one
last shot at the pole and preserving the No.(Sports Network) – The Toronto Blue
Jays offence should get a much needed boost tonight with the expected return of
slugger Jose Bautista as they open a three-game series against the Baltimore
Orioles. Bautista has been out of the lineup since spraining his wrist against
the New York Yankees on July 16th. Bautista was hitting .244 with 27 home runs
and 65 RBIs at the time of the injury,  the Jays went 11-23 in his absence.
Right-hander Carlos Villanueva will take the hill against the Orioles for the
Blue Jays. The 28-year-old Dominican began the season with six consecutive wins
including four in four starts between July 4-July 27 – while posting a 2.92
earned run average in 61 2/3 innings. Hes not won in four starts thus far in
August, when hes gone 0-3 while allowing 22 hits and 10 runs in 25 1/3 innings.
He was a 2-1 loser to Texas on Aug. 18 after giving up two runs in 6 1/3
innings. In six career meetings with the Orioles, Villanueva is 2-0 with a 3.91
earned run average in 23 innings. Baltimore counters with lefty Zach Britton,
who starts for the seventh time this year and the second time in his career
against Toronto. The 24-year-old won a 3-2 decision at Detroit in his most
recent outing on Aug. 18 after tossing seven scoreless innings of six-hit ball
with three walks and five strikeouts. The gem ended a streak in which Britton
had surrendered six or more runs in three straight starts while his ERA
ballooned from 3.60 to 8.10. He was 11-11 in 28 starts as a rookie last season,
including a loss to the Bluee Jays after allowing seven runs in six hits in five
innings. Brian Cushing Youth Jersey. On Thursday in
Detroit, Alex Avila drove in the game-winning run in the bottom of the 11th
inning as the Tigers downed the Blue Jays, 3-2, to complete a three-game sweep
at Comerica Park. Jhonny Peralta singled off Chad Jenkins (0-1) to start the
11th, but was wiped off the base paths on Delmon Youngs fielders choice
groundout. Pinch-runner Quintin Berry replaced Young and promptly stole second
before Jeff Baker walked. After Andy Dirks struck out, Avila ripped a single
into right field and Berry slid in safely at home to give the Tigers the win.
Toronto starter J.A. Happ spun 7 1/3 innings of one-run ball, scattering four
hits and walking three while striking out seven for the Jays. Justin Verlander
allowed just two runs on four hits and struck out 12 over nine frames for
Detroit. On Wednesday in Texas, Adrian Beltre hit three homers, including two in
the fourth inning, and Mitch Moreland hit a grand slam as the Rangers trampled
the Orioles, 12-3. Nick Markakis went 3-for-4 and drove in all three runs for
Baltimore, which lost for the second time in five games. Tommy Hunter (4-8) was
tagged for eight runs on eight hits while walking two over three-plus innings to
lose his fourth consecutive decision. The Orioles won five of the first nine
games between the teams in 2012, but dropped three straight in a series from May
28-30 at Rogers Centre. The Blue Jays won last years series, 12-6. ’ ’ ’ 

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