July 31, 2014

Browns thoughts on the heels of the raid of Pilot Flying J

Pilot Flying JSo yesterday was a strange day. How’s that for an understatement?

As we were all learning of the bombing in Boston, news broke of the FBI “locking down” the corporate headquarters for Pilot Flying J down in Knoxville. Some initially wondered if the two events were even related. Quickly we heard three additional letters added to the story about the FBI when we found out they were acting in concert with the IRS. Even before we heard about the IRS, it occurred to me rather quickly that the FBI raiding a company on tax day is probably not ironic as much as it is intentionally symbolic.

What does any of this have to do with the Browns? We certainly don’t know yet, but I can’t help but think back to February when Jimmy Haslam returned to the helm of Pilot Flying J a mere five months after John Compton’s name was announced and a mere month and a half after he officially started as CEO. It certainly lends new eyebrow-raising intrigue to a specific statement about Compton’s feelings following the removal.

Haslam indicated Monday that Compton was comfortable with the latest shift in responsibilities. “John and I’ve had really positive conversations and I think we both feel good about the positions that we’re both returning to or going to,” he said.

While it’s not safe to assume anything, it seems pretty logical to suspect that maybe Compton’s departure might align with Pilot Flying J learning that they were under investigation. It is reasonable to suspect that maybe Compton really was extremely “comfortable” with the latest shift that wouldn’t see him guiding the company through some pending legal issues that he had no part in creating.

All this is just speculation. There will be real details forthcoming and I hope for the sake of Browns fans that it really is nothing major that could find its way to rolling downhill to Berea. Regardless of how you feel about Jimmy Haslam and the Haslam family business in Knoxville, one thing remains. Browns fans don’t deserve to be victims of a situation that has nothing to do with football as all they want to do is watch a football team win football games.

Here’s hoping the NFL’s vetting process was thorough and good and that it will be no distraction to the goals and focus of those trying to build a winner in Berea.

  • walt

    Only in Cleveland…

  • stryker1121

    Let us pray..

  • BenRM

    Every time I think we have something nice…

    1999: YAY! Football team!!!!
    2007: Hey we almost made the playoffs. Things are looking up, DA!
    2010: Peyton Hillis, you are unbe-freaking-awesome!
    2012: Hey this 4-3 defense is looking strong. How about that D-Line!
    2013: Man, it is great to have an involved owner with deep pockets!

  • humboldt

    Factory of absurdity

  • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

    “Real details” might not be forthcoming for years. It was more than 2 years between the raids on Jimmy Dimora’s house/office and his eventual arrest and indictment.

  • MSkog

    Word out of Berea is the draft board has changed. Now looking at best available attorney or CPA.

  • BenRM

    I really dug this comment.

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    Wrong story of the day for this IMO.

  • Hopwin

    Unnamed sources report they expect to file charges in federal court May 5th. The indictment will be for:
    Redneck hootnannery
    Hillbilly shenanigans
    and
    Southern unhospitality

  • The_Matt_Of_Akron

    “all they want to do is watch a football team win football games.”

    It seems so simple when you say it that way, yet it feels like asking for the moon.

  • Harv 21

    shut it down, boys, we have a winner

  • http://twitter.com/Dennymayo Denny
  • WFNYJon

    I have been waiting for this all morning. Well-done.

  • http://www.waitingfornextyear.com Craig Lyndall

    Point taken, but Dimora’s was a pretty complex case involving power, corruption and influence spanning many parties and illicit paper and phone trails. I’m guessing the IRS investigation is potentially (probably?) a bit more focused. I always just assume a money trail will be hotter than an influence-peddling one. Just by it involving the IRS it feels more focused to me. Maybe I’m crazy though. We’ll see.

  • JK

    The Sad Factory of Absurdity

  • JK

    Are any of those felonies?

  • JK

    Oh we’re doing .gifs now?

  • Harv 21

    Here’s a thought: had this happened 8 months earlier no way the NFL would have approved Haslam ownership. No Haslam, Randy’s still here denying he’s looking to get out, and Heck is prepping for the draft. Who knows where Shurmur is.

    My head hurts. Why are Cleveland sports always dripping with so much non-sports crap?

  • BenRM

    And here I thought I’d have a chance. GG, sir MSkog

  • humboldt

    I’m afraid it may be a more serious case of grandpa’s old fashioned financial tomfoolery

  • Harv 21

    While I’m worried Denny intends to use this same clip every time something happens to Haslam, forever.

  • humboldt

    In other words, from BPA to CPA?

  • http://www.waitingfornextyear.com Craig Lyndall

    Did you know that Tom Brady wore a Yankees hat before? It does happen other places. We just don’t normally care about the storylines.

  • http://twitter.com/Dennymayo Denny

    Only when it’s relevant, which is always and forever.

  • The_Matt_Of_Akron

    If Halsam doesn’t work out, at least Frank Langella will have some practice, so we don’t have to go back to Randy….

    http://movies.yahoo.com/news/frank-langella-cleveland-browns-owner-draft-day-190007860.html

  • http://twitter.com/GreatestHurley Jason Hurley

    Factory of Sadsurdity?

  • http://twitter.com/GreatestHurley Jason Hurley

    The IRS doesn’t usually go spelunking. They usually know what they’re looking for before they go looking.

  • Harv 21

    This is no Yankee hat / fan neurosis stuff. This is closer to Dodger owner imploding divorce stuff, potential impact on the org stuff. Did our one confluence of positive events die in 2007 in the ninth inning with Jose Mesa? That was it? My last sight of land before we sunk in the water for the third time was Jose’s sweat-covered fu manchu? Unacceptable.

    Don’t try that we’re-not-the-only-ones attitude with me, You know in your heart that we are. Hence the website name.