If you haven’t been paying attention to the current ownership mess in Denver, it’s a real life “soap opera” playing out between the children/heirs of Pat Bowlen. And the more that it goes on, the more the succession plan that the Buccaneers owners, the Glazers, had in place, looks smart.
First here’s the latest on the Bowlen saga in “the Mile High City” from former Broncos beat reporter and, now Denver radio and tv host, Mike Klis:
— Mike Klis (@MikeKlis) June 3, 2018
As Klis details, the younger sister, Brittany Bowlen, appears to be the likely choice of the Pat Bowlen Trust, which is currently overseeing the team due to Pat Bowlen’s advanced Alzheimer’s making him incapable of making decisions for the team, for Brittany to become the controlling owner of the Broncos.
This is despite the P.R. campaign late last week of her older “half sister” Beth Bowlen Wallace. Bowlen Wallace believes that she should be awarded controlling status, because she has met the criteria that her father and the trust put in place. This includes having been previously working for the franchise in a senior management position.
Now, this is just the latest NFL ownership succession public mess that we’ve seen recently. One involved the Saints and the members of Tom Benson’s family. In 2015 his ex-wife and their children went to Louisiana court in an attempt to have Benson ruled unfit to make decisions for himself and the team. This after Benson wrote them out of his will and succession plan for the NFL franchise.
They were unsuccessful in their attempts and when Benson passed away earlier this year, he left the team with a new plan for his new wife Gayle. She was approved, as the new Saints controlling owner in April.
This brings us to the Buccaneers, and the current controlling ownership by the sons and daughter of the late Malcolm Glazer. Glazer, who had become virtually incapacitated by a series of strokes in 2006, obviously left a clear succession plan that his sons Bryan, Joel, and Ed (seen above at the hiring of coach Dirk Koetter in 2016) would be “co-chairman” and run the franchise equally.
That plan has been in place and the sons have represented the franchise on all league matters since that time until Malcolm Glazer died in May of 2014.
And, the Glazer brothers also welcomed sister Darcie Glazer-Kassewitz, as one of the co-chair “people” for day to day running of the franchise in 2014.
One big difference in the Bucs dynamic from the other two examples is that the principal owner (in their case Malcolm) was not married a second time and/or with a different set of children brought into the mix to be possible successor.
Back to the Denver situation, that competition/conflict between children in the marriage and the re-marriage of Pat Bowlen is clearly at the heart of the problem.
The Glazers have had no such issues in diving up responsibilities and running the Buccaneers.
Family feud’s over money and estates are nothing new in America or in pro sports in the country, and there will probably be more examples in the NFL in the future of siblings and relatives disputing over billion dollar franchises.
The Bucs owner and family had a plan and stuck to it.
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