USC will no longer change the name of the Coliseum.
The university will now call it United Airlines Field at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum after United Airlines agreed to a compromise deal following pressure of politicians and veterans.
The deal is now 10 years instead of 16. USC did not reveal how much less it will receive than the original $69 million agreement. USC official Todd Dickey estimated in March the deal would lose 30-40 percent of its value if the naming rights were switched to the field from the stadium.
“Through this process, USC was guided by doing the right thing for the community as we continue to honor our veterans,” USC interim president Wanda Austin said.
Said Coliseum Commission president Janice Hahn: “I am pleased that USC and United have come together in a way that will honor the memories of veterans who served in World War I and our broader community of veterans.”
This saga revealed all kinds of inconsistencies:
- The Coliseum Commission happily approved the original deal in 2018 and then suddenly changed its tune when Hahn joined the commission and opposed it.
- USC’s greed and hubris created the problem by trying to change the name of a historic stadium that honored World War I veterans when it opened in 1923 and eventually all veterans.
- Remember this deal was struck when Max Nikias was still in full control and money trumped morals.
- How about United Airlines? It threatened to completely pull out of the deal in March but now is happy with the field rights? Did I mention United CEO Oscar Munoz is on the USC Board of Trustees? Of course he is.