July 22, 2014

Cleveland Browns Stadium to be named via FirstEnergy

The news vortex of Twitter is abuzz on Monday stating that the Browns will be handing naming rights over to FirstEnergy, the diversified energy company headquartered in Akron, Ohio. Several outlets are bantering about the likelihood of said scenario while trolling for feedback — one of the more legitimate being WEWS’ Kristin Volk.

Following the completion of the transaction which transferred majority ownership of the Cleveland Browns to Jimmy Haslam III, naming rights to the stadium were one of the first items which many in Cleveland expected to be changed. The stadium had been dubbed “Cleveland Browns Stadium” since its erection prior to the 1999 season, but Haslam — the former CEO of a billion-dollar truck stop business — notoriously sees the stadium as additional means to market the team.

WEWS reports that the Wilson Football plant in Ada, Ohio has already printed and shipped 60 balls with the FirstEnergy mark on them. If the rumor is proved true, what the stadium’s official name will be remains to be seen as “FirstEnergy Stadium” is presently home to the Reading Fighting Phils, the Eastern League affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies. This, in addition to the stadium that houses the University of Akron soccer programs. “FirstEnergy Field” appears to have some traction.

In 2008, Progressive Insurance (headquartered in Mayfield, Ohio) purchased the naming rights to the ballpark which houses the Cleveland Indians, costing the publicly traded firm roughly $58 million for 16 years of rights. Two months prior, Progressive laid of 340 employees. This past November, FirstEnergy — having eliminated 200 positions in October — announced that it expects to cut up to 400 jobs by 2016 citing “struggles to stay profitable in a lackluster economy,” one which has led to continued low demand and low power prices. As of 2010, First Energy reportedly employed 10,000 individuals and provided energy sources to 4.5 million customers.

Update: The Plain Dealer has confimed reports that FirstEnergy has purchased naming rights to the stadium.

[Related: Kelly, Chudzinski, & Plan B….Was There One?]

  • MOARwins

    Factory of Sadness Stadium

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    Hmmmmm lets see how many catchy “power outtage” phrases we can come up with!

  • FearTheRoo

    There already is a First Energy Stadium in Northeast Ohio. Home of the only team in the area to win a championship since ’64. The Akron Zips.

  • architrance

    Word. Just rename the team “The Blackout”

  • FearTheRoo

    Maybe First Energy Field would work better.

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    Soccer championships don’t count not for the Crunch or the Zips! ;-(

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    Maybe some PR person can put “First Energy” on white flags and have them be a giveaway!

  • EZ

    The Cleveland Crunch disagree with the second part of that statement.

  • MrCleaveland

    So let’s see if I understand this. Thousands of people are going to see the name change and so be excited that they immediately switch electric companies. Meanwhile, thousands of others will switch over from gas to electric — but not just any electric, FIRST ENERGY electric.

    Yeah, that’s probably what will happen.

  • Harv 21

    Not bad. Sure beats Ferry Cap and Screw Stadium.

  • MrCleaveland

    Yeah, this is exactly the kind of prudent, responsible company that I want to deal with. FIRST ENERGY: You Pay Us Money, We Spend It Recklessly!

  • humboldt

    Sadly, energy will be the only thing finishing first on the Lakefront

  • mgbode

    First Energy Diversified Utility Park

    or FED-UP for short

  • mgbode

    I think SF has all those copyrighted after the MNF fiasco

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T3NBMfl9GOY

  • http://twitter.com/Dennymayo Denny

    Fourth-Place Energy Stadium

  • Shadow_play

    Let’s just call it The Flying J-Dium.

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    Never bet against Cleveland when it comes to things like this though.

  • clesports44

    Can we at least convince them to do First Energy Field at Cleveland Browns Stadium? Keep some of the tradition, but still get money. Then people can call it whatever they want!

  • mgbode

    well, in the particular game referenced, Ben’s pain med’s ended up wearing off because of the delay and he played like crud. see WWAW’s Jason Taylor article for more detail.

    If it was us, then it wouldn’t have worked out so well.

  • cmm13

    Is it making anyone else unsettled yet that EVERY single “headline” since the firing of Pat Shurmur is either bad or awkward news on the Browns.

    …cause, to be honest with ya…iiiiiiiiiii’m starting to wonder what the HELL is going on here?

  • vespo09

    *since the Browns returned to the league

  • SlawDiesel

    Heh heh, you said “erection”

  • Natedawg86

    How’s come we never have Brown Outs

  • Garry_Owen

    Well, to be fair, we fans have paid the Browns lots of money over the years, and they continue to pay, like, 9 head coaches. Simultaneously. That’s somewhat reckless. This is a good marriage of recklessness.

  • MrCleaveland

    Hmmm . . . Palmer Policy Clark Davis Garcia Savage Crennell Mangini Kokinis Holmgren Heckert Shurmur Stadium. Has a nice ring to it.

  • saggy

    hey!

  • http://www.zfcomics.com dgriff13

    Would Prozac Stadium be a better name? LOL…..
    I always liked that it was named Cleveland Browns Stadium… but if this is a good financial move for the browns, it could mean more wins, and then I can’t complain.
    Until I see those wins.. complain complain complain. *wink*

  • saggy

    well, the good headlines of the past 13 years haven’t led to anything so maybe this is a better path.

  • Eric G

    I never understood why, if they wanted so badly to sell the naming rights, not try to work something out with UPS – UPS Browns Stadium – what can the Browns do for you

  • Wow

    considering the team has sucked since 99, I’m fine with making changes.

  • Garry_Owen

    Really rolls off the tongue.

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    It’s because Randy Lerner still has a part of the team. Until his stank is completely exorcised from this organization Browns fans will be haunted!

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    It’s to late the change that needed to happen was letting the name, colors and records go to Baltimore and instead of them starting anew it should have been Cleveland. And I’m not joking.

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    Like my vomit did when I read it!

  • maxfnmloans

    i cant say that I argue with you. what should have happened was Lerner should have won the expansion bid for Baltimore when it went to Carolina instead, and then Modell would have had no where to move the Browns and we never would have had a Lerner. There’s an NFL conspiracy theory out there about expansion and publicly funded stadiums. Cleveland was the major domino the league needed to get leverage over all the other nervous fan bases who didnt want to lose their teams.

  • MrCleaveland

    First Emesis Stadium!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=12934050 Yugoslav Musac

    So does Mike “The Miz” Mizanin

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    I don’t know about the NFL and publicily funded stadiums but I follow the theory. As far as the Browns go I always had a problem with Al Lerner being the guy who brought the team back when in fact he was involved with the original Browns. My opinion of letting everything go associated with the original Browns was a way of exorcising some of the percieved demons but honestly it probably wouldn’t have mattered since Lerner became the next owner anyways. It’s just been one mistake after another and it started even when this town didn’t have a team.

  • Robbie

    If they could post a winning record every year and go to the playoffs once a decade, they could actually name the stadium “The Mistake By The Lake”and I could not care less.

  • Richard_Haydn

    OK. So a company that relies on a good share of its business as a regulated monopoly, through the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO), spends our money to get a stadium named after them. Hey, Progressive can do what they want, they are not guaranteed a profit by the state. I guess we will have R.I.T.A. arena and East Ohio Gas field before long. You know, East Ohio that was applauded by the industry when it said it was forced to increase rates because people were conserving natural gas! I will call it Cleveland Browns Stadium.

  • Hezoucky

    No no, it needs to be another Heinz field, you know like the Heinz red zone… Lets start with purging the Pitts puke out of the stadium also!

  • Yankee in Texas

    All of you are missing the most important point of the article. Who cares what the stadium is named. Drawing conclusions from the article, people are losing JOBS so that companies are able to purchase naming rights. That is just ridiculous. Cleveland’s priorities were messed up when the Browns left and they still are to this day. What good does having your name on a stadium mean, when there aren’t enough people with jobs to purchase tickets? Give me college ball any day – those kids play with heart.

  • mgbode

    yes, there is no money in the college game. it is pure.

  • Chuck Schick

    That’s been happening since 1999

  • Donald pasqualetti

    I through the stadium belong to the people who build the stadium since when do the people who rent the stadium get the extra money how much longer are the people going to let big business walk all over them when it come to money