Sizing up Sam Boyd as a temporary NFL home

Boy, did I pick a bad day to visit Sam Boyd.

In the middle of the worst wind storm in years, I sized up the 1970's era relic the Rebels call home.

Could the Raiders share it?

“It needs a lot of retrofitting. The locker rooms are nowhere near NFL standard. They'd have to spend a significant amount of money on locker rooms,” says Clark County Commissioner Steve Sisolak, who stays in regular contact with the soon-to-be Las Vegas Raiders.


With Oakland suffering through a bad and understandable--case of bruised feelings, some Oakland officials wanting the team gone – now.

The Raiders may need a landing strip.

They're supposed to have two more years in Oakland, with an option on a third.

And the stadium here won't be ready until 2020.

UNLV couldn't go on camera.

Mike Newcomb, the guy who runs Sam Boyd says, "We'd be excited about the opportunity."

As for how much it would cost the Raiders, to get this place to NFL specs, “Could be a little, could be a lot,” he told me by phone.

The temporary options facing the Raiders range from stadiums in Santa Clara, Berkeley, San Francisco and San Diego to San Antonio.

“They already know that we're in a place that highly values pro football. They like the Alamodome a lot. They know it works for them,” says Mike Sawaya, the director of the Texas sports facility, which the Raiders have scouted in the past. “It's got the right environment,” Sawaya says.

It’s doubtful the Cowboy's Jerry Jones, or the Texans Bob Mcnair would like sharing their state. It seems, according to observers, that the Texas venue would not be a realistic option.

Meanwhile, back at a windblown Sam Boyd Stadium, with a maximum capacity of 40,000, they need more seats, along with a big high-tech makeover.

“The big thing to the NFL is the technological situation at Sam Boyd,” says Sisolak. “You don't have tthe fiber, the room for the cameras along the sidelines, the overhead cameras,” he says.

UNLV says this place could fit the bill.

If anything, Sam Boyd, modest as it may be, would help the Las Vegas Raiders appreciated their new $1.7 billion stadium even more.

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