Other than perhaps "mediocre," over the past couple of years no adjective has been used more often to describe Colorado's football program than "cash-strapped ." And with a raft of buyouts and new contracts to pay for in the wake of Dan Hawkins' dismissal (and Jon Embree's hiring), not to mention the cost of the switch from the Big 12 to the Pac-12, gridiron money in Boulder is still as scarce as ever.
So maybe it's no surprise the Buffs are exploring one of football's most time-honored strategies for a quick injection of cash: renaming the stadium after someone willing to give them an awful lot of money , as the Boulder Camera reports:
The University of Colorado is discussing a deal for the naming rights to Folsom Field with at least one Colorado-based company, athletic director Mike Bohn confirmed ...
The Camera reported several years ago that the Board of Regents gave initial approval to Bohn to pursue naming rights opportunities for the stadium with the stipulation that any deal retain Folsom Field as part of the name. The regents would have to approve any agreement.
"We recognize the significant partnership and activation opportunity that exists with a stadium naming relationship," Bohn said. "We have been working for the last several years to find a partner to play a role in our continued movement to the Pac-12.
"It would be premature to reveal potential partners or naming efforts at this time."
Premature or not, one potential partner-slash-naming effort has been reveealed all the same, as the following snapshot appeared Tuesday on the Colorado message board AllBuffs.com:
That's an image of a Frontier Airlines jet behind the "Frontier Stadium" banner on the Folsom Field video board there. So we'd say it's a pretty safe bet that the Colorado-based air carrier is a primary candidate for the naming rights; the Camera reported the image was placed on the board to give visiting Frontier executives an idea of how the name might look. (And now, thanks to the leak, everyone knows how it might look.)
If the deal is done, obviously, that'll be great news for a Colorado program that needs the money, and the proposed "Folsom Field at Frontier Stadium" moniker is at least more palatable than simply ditching the Folsom Field name that's graced the venue since 1944 .
That said, it's still just one more way the economics of major college football is making our sport more and more similar to its professional counterpart. Here's to hoping the expected deal in Boulder is the end of a trend rather than the start of one.