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Chris Richardson
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Chris Richardson

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Rush Wins Again


Ah Rush, you've done it again.  By now, Dan Wetzel's article has made the rounds and news of NFL owners denying any potential Rush Limbaugh purchase of the St. Louis Rams should really come as no surprise.  The owners, spearheaded by Roger "Iron Fist" Goodell, are incredibly concerned about the image the NFL portrays.  If you need further proof, you might want to review the numerous player conduct-related suspensions since Goodell's inception.  A good image equals sponsors with liberal (no pun intended) purse strings; something David Stern also acknowledges with his dress code and strict fighting rules.  

Rush knows this, too. He's too media-savvy -- well, he or his handlers, anyway -- not too.

So why, then, was the Limbaugh camp so eager to get the word about the Rams interest out? I'll answer that with another question: Who is everybody talking about right now?  Good ole Rush and his controversial ownership bid.  And no doubt the King of Rhetoric and Hyperbole is loving every minute of it.  Whether or not he gets to join the NFL Owners' Inner Circle seems secondary now.

Sadly, the fact that Rush is even a subject of NFL-related discussion in the wake of the surprising starts of the Denver Broncos and Cincinnati Bengals is disappointing.  

With that in mind, does Rush have the right to want to buy into an NFL franchise?  Absolutely.  Do these same owners who oversee the approval process -- think exclusive country club -- have the right to pick and choose who they allow?  In case you're wondering what the answer is, just ask Mark Cuban and the potential sellers of the Pittsburgh Pirates.  Are we honestly being asked to believe that the money and energy of the outspoken Cuban wouldn't be welcome for a team in such a moribund tailspin as the once-proud Pirates?  Of course not.  Cuban, for some reason or another, didn't fit the MLB owners "profile," something I have no doubt David Stern also influenced here, directly or otherwise.

And because of Rush's never-ending stream of (enter your own personal noun for Limbaugh's shtick here), he and his money are not welcome in a club where Roger Goodell is responsible for the oversight of such a diverse group of, well, employees.  Do the owners match said diversification?  Not so much; but sometimes, you have to keep those who make the money happy too.  It's not like other potential buyers won't step up in the wake of Rush's "potential" denial, either.  With that in mind, decrying Rush's outspoken behavior is a win-win for Goodell.

Furthermore, if Goodell represents the owners and their opinions (not to mention the players themselves), then he's absolutely right to speak his mind on the subject.  The truth of the matter is, whether or not Rush gets his shot at NFL ownership, he still benefits because of the inescapable media storm that follows.  Keep in mind, for someone who embraces the controversy his name alone inspires, all pub is good pub.  Just ask Oxycontin and Rush's subsequent fall from grace that permanently removed him from the public's eye.

Oh, that's right.

By Chris Richardson  |  October 14, 2009; 7:01 AM ET  | Category:  Roger Goodell , St. Louis Rams Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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the toad and the civilised barbarians might make a better circus

Posted by: catclaw | October 14, 2009 8:06 AM


Posted by: LOONYBIN2000 | October 14, 2009 8:12 AM

The sooner the lambs (rams) leave St. Louis, the better for those who live here! The team is a disgusting embarrassment to the entire region. Best case scenario would be for the cardinals to come back to St. Louis (without bidwell) and the lambs to get shipped to Phoenix.

Posted by: monk55 | October 14, 2009 8:13 AM

You misspelled Oxycontin.

Posted by: poncholio | October 14, 2009 8:17 AM

Affiliating with a draft-dodging pederast, who at the beginning of the modern version of its perennial pedophile priest scandal claimed "The Roman Catholic Church is the rock-ribbed backbone of American moral values," wouldn't be good for any American organization, team or business. Listen up, sponsors!

Posted by: iamerican | October 14, 2009 8:34 AM

Let's see, a money grubbing league with a team that needs a huge cash influx to support a bunch of overpaid thugs...

They say it's OK to be involved with a man that has been convicted of training dogs to fight to the death. It's OK to be involved with a man who, in rage STOMPS DOGS TO DEATH, ELECTROCUTES DOGS TO DEATH, BEATS DOGS TO DEATH, AND HANGS THEM WITH ELECTRICAL CABLE...

He's an upright citizen.

HOWEVER, it's not OK to be involved with a man who has different political views, and speaks his mind and has a following, which could actually lead to MORE viewers.

THE NFL are losers and hypocrits of the 1st magnitude. No more in our house.

Posted by: kentuckythunder | October 14, 2009 8:42 AM

Rush needs to go into retirement, he'll enjoy it and so will we. Owning a football team would be his retirement hobby.

Posted by: hernanenriquez | October 14, 2009 8:44 AM

I think we should all remember that the NFL does not want to redress the organization drug regulations. I call Rush the "drugster" and not only players, coaches, and management, but also the franchise owners should be able to pass a drug screening test. This ofcourse is a test that "Drugster" Limbaugh could never pass. We need good citizens in every aspect of the NFL not people of question. Rush is not the good citizen that the NFL should want to be associated with. JJM

Posted by: mcclaire | October 14, 2009 9:00 AM

What an absurd premise for an article. If you get past your emotional response to Rush, it'd be easy to see that the premise of the artilce just doesn't make sense.

Are you saying that a person who has 20-30 million listeners every day (and who is talked about in the media so much, that certain media personalities haved actually begged on air to talk about OTHER things) is motivated to spend millions of dollars of his own money on the chance that by doing so he will gain publicity? Really? Don't you think he could think of other, more cost-effective ways of increasing his publicity?

I mean, gosh... if he only had some national forum - say, a national radio show - THEN he wouldn't have to spend all that money! He could use THAT venue to say REALLY controversial things all the time, and the media would talk about him like, non-stop, and THAT would increase his publicity! Oh, wait...

Posted by: breeboo | October 14, 2009 9:04 AM

The listenership demographic of Rush Limbaugh's radio show makes the draft-dodging pederast "Father Couglin Redux": not good for the NFL, not good for America.

Posted by: iamerican | October 14, 2009 9:10 AM

This is a typical Liberal Witch hunt against not only Rush but all Conservatives.

Same tired attack--Rush must be racist. Condemnation without facts first--verification--well.....never.


Liberals do NOT watch the NFL anyway--check your demographic data

Posted by: JaxMax | October 14, 2009 10:16 AM

If you are going to call names like a six year old at least spell it right.

Posted by: awatts1 | October 14, 2009 10:41 AM


You said something about this not being a very cost-efficient way to increase publicity. Um, how much has this little endeavor cost Rush? Nothing, because he hasn't had to put any of his money up. He's simply let his interests be known, and if you don't think he knew what the resulting reaction would be, you're fooling yourself.


Thanks, I missed that completely.

It's either that, or you haven't been paying attention to the way Rush works.


Um, the NFL doesn't need Rush Limbaugh's influence to improve their television ratings. They are doing just fine w/out him. And hey, Rush has every right to say what he wants. Just like the owners and Goodell have every right to disagree and not do business with him.

It works both ways.


I'm sorry, who said Rush was racist? I didn't in my post, but since you bring it up without provocation, perhaps there's something to that train of thought.

And are you implying conservatives will stop watching in lieu of Rush being denied entry? Yeah, right. Even you don't believe that.

Posted by: IFChris | October 14, 2009 10:41 AM


What name did I call Rush?

Posted by: IFChris | October 14, 2009 10:43 AM

I would like to have seen Rush get the Rams. He would have lost some of his $100s of millions because no good players would play for him and anyone that did would get pummeled on the field. I certainly would hate to see the damage his QB would have taken.

Posted by: MikeMcNally | October 14, 2009 10:47 AM

I think this would be a lot of fun. Limbaugh could be the stadium announcer.

"And against the God-fearing, Real-American Ram patriots"; the godless, blue-and-white- gay-color-wearing, liberal Broncos from Obama-from-Kenya-loving-Denver take the field with their Marxist plot to give America to the Communists"

Posted by: coloradodog | October 14, 2009 10:49 AM

There is no doubt in my mind that no player belonging to any minority group, i.e., other than white players, and probably even a large majority of white players would not play for a team owned by Rush Limbaugh. Of course, no one can force a player to play for any particular team, contract or not, because if forced to play the player would simply not perform anywhere near his best abilities. The team would simply go 0-16 every year Rush was involved. But, all that aside, I still wonder how Rush was able to get away with illegally purchasing OxyContin, when most other Americans would have gone to prison for such conduct. And, I can assure you I would still watch professional football games (my favorite sport), if Rush was denied ownership in any NFL franchise.

Posted by: Caliguy55 | October 14, 2009 10:52 AM



Limbaugh could have Mormon Elder Glenn Beck give the opening prayer just before the National Anthem:

"Our dear, white, blond Jesus, we just pray God smite these Obama lovers as we pray He smite the Muslim terrorist himself. Restore Lord Cheney as the leader of our Christian Nation and continue to be on our side as we attack Iran for their oil as commanded by thy lost nation Israel."

Posted by: coloradodog | October 14, 2009 10:57 AM

If "Oxycontin" Rush buys the Rams, will the team be exempt from the NFL's drug policy?

Posted by: ceefer66 | October 14, 2009 10:58 AM

"So why, then, was the Limbaugh camp so eager to get the word about the Rams interest out? I'll answer that with another question:"

Well, I'll answer that question. He's an entertainer and for an entertainer, there is no such thing as bad publicity.

Yawn. Rush is yesterday's news.

Posted by: arancia12 | October 14, 2009 10:58 AM

Maybe some of the teams that aren't doing well will let Michael Vick bring some of his dogs for a half time extravaganz...this is the holier than thou NFL...

Rush is great, beer is good and the NFL is crazy

Posted by: ekim53 | October 14, 2009 10:59 AM


That's only SLIGHTLY less of a weak position. C'mon, man... he did NOT "simply let his intentions be known." First off, he wasn't the one who "leaked" the information. But even if he did, this was not him simplly "letting his intentions be known." He's going through a very serious legal process with a group of other people to make a play for this team. That's not just like dropping a name during a conversation. And again, ask yourself... for what? You really keep missing the point - he's NOT hurting for publicity. In order for the premise of this article to make any sense, Rush needs to be lacking in some way for publicity. Are you really going to try to make the argument that he IS lacking in some way for publicity?

Posted by: breeboo | October 14, 2009 11:01 AM

Rush would enjoy the locker room - too bad the players aren't a little younger.

Posted by: coloradodog | October 14, 2009 11:03 AM

I will enjoy Rush suing the ESPN bigots who libeled him. Rick "I killed a pedestrian while I was drunk and got away with it" Sanchez from CNN used Wikipedia as his source -- maybe Comedy Central should fact check Rick Sanchez.

Keyshawn Johnson has said many racist things against white people and black people who get along with white people. Yet he is on ESPN. Things are kicking up now that there is a diversity standard on ESPN and the NFL.

the NFL bent over backwards to help a dog torturer, it has a current coach who beat an assistant coach and almost killed him, Ray Lewis was present when 2 people were killed, and yet this is what gets Goodell?

Posted by: Cornell1984 | October 14, 2009 11:04 AM

How dare Rush try to save jobs and keep a business in a recession ridden St. Louis.

Rush has very good cause of action against Goodell for civil rights discrimination.

Posted by: Cornell1984 | October 14, 2009 11:06 AM

If Limbaugh wins, the US loses.

His 15 mins. of fame are over he offers more of the same spin and lies, like bush/cheney.
Perhaps we can just ignore yet another angry white republican man.

Posted by: jama452 | October 14, 2009 11:07 AM

He's Kim Jong Il, shooting off a ineffective missle for the publicity!

Posted by: GTFOOH | October 14, 2009 11:08 AM

kentuckythunder: to your comments re: Saint Rush, and the coming NFL snub, I say: "Thank God" you and your (no-doubt) twisted brood won't be watching the NFL anymore -- here's a secret for you, buddy: THE NFL DOESN'T NEED YOU! So, back to Hee-Haw re-runs on Sundays for you and the good ole boys- YEE HAW!!

Posted by: guisher | October 14, 2009 11:08 AM

Rush is great, beer is good and the NFL is crazy

Posted by: ekim53 | October 14, 2009 11:10 AM

I don't know one thing about football. Not one thing. But I do know Rush having listened to him for years. He's not a racist anymore than I am or those who have posted comments on this issue.

Since Obama's presidency, the race card has been played to excess...and it's getting old.

Essentially, freedom of speech and the simple act of having an opinion has been "shut down" via "race baiting".

Way to go America.

Rush Limbaugh has elevated more Blacks out of "victimhood" than the Democratic Party that needs to keep them in victimhood in order to gain power. That, my friends, is pure racism. No different than the slave owners of yesterday.

One more comment: Sport's your own body of copy. You are no friend to the professional athlete.

Posted by: TheSupervisor | October 14, 2009 11:19 AM

I wonder if the NFL gets a boycott pass by "Rushies" for a 3 game run, if they will change their tune.
NO SHOW is a scary deal to the sports industry. It might be a vote for freedom that they cannot ignore.

Money always talks, ( except to Obama , who just likes to destroy business and wealth in the USA so his cousins in the caves clap and are gleeful).

Posted by: dottydo | October 14, 2009 11:24 AM

Exhibit bias deny him an equal chance to buy the team. I DARE YOU. Rush has at least 20 million listeners a week . He would NEVER call for it or approve of it BUT I WILL ! I will NEVER go to a game OF ANY TEAM , WATCH ON TV ,OR LISTEN ON RADIO To one more NFL game EVER . I will on my own accord practice a boycott of all games and product advertised by the NFL. I will PLASTER it on every blog , newspaper and everywhere else I can. PERSONALLY ! SO GO AHEAD EXHIBIT BIAS. I DARE YOU !

Posted by: Imarkex | October 14, 2009 11:26 AM

I Hope Rush Fails!!!

Posted by: clifton3 | October 14, 2009 11:28 AM

Bang on, Chris.

Rush has made millions by staying front and center in the public consciousness even if much of what he spouses is hyperbole and self serving bombastic rhetoric. Whatever he has to say that is important to a national dialog on politics is buried in the bombast and preening of someone who knows staying a media superstar requires constant nourishing of his image. And, his followers love it and keep flocking to the master or as he calls himself The Maharishi!

He will never see the inside of an NFL locker room as an owner but will be laughing all the way to the bank or his newest drug connection.

America; it is a wonderful concept!

Posted by: bobfbell | October 14, 2009 11:43 AM

Such hatred for this man who millions of people respect and love. It's all being spewed by those pc bigots who only repeat what the bias media says about Rush. I hope he sues the hell out of the likes of Shuster, Deutsch, Contessa Who, Begala, Carville and the usual suspects from MSNBC and CNN. Their sources are Wikipedia and Media Matters?

Wonder why Olbermann hasn't bloviated --- hmmm, he always does when it comes to trashing a conservative. Now there's a reason to boycott the NFL.

Posted by: gwalter1 | October 14, 2009 11:47 AM


I never said he was "lacking in publicity." I simply said he enjoys the extra pub he's been getting. Again, if you don't think that's the case, you simply haven't been paying attention to the way he works.

Does he not absolutely THRIVE on controversy? Yes, he does. Is this a controversial subject? Yes it is. Now, if you can't connect the two here, I don't know what to tell you.

Posted by: IFChris | October 14, 2009 11:50 AM


lol!!! what a funny article. That Fat "Bastardo" wanted to be part of the NFL as bad as he still wants to be part of ESPN.

His stupidity will keep him in that useless seat for the rest of his life.

He and all his followers are a waste of space and air.

Posted by: A-Voter | October 14, 2009 11:53 AM

of course Rush is racist, in that cloying, somewhat deniable way that has allowed him to weasle out of being responsible for his own opinions. Unless he has total control over his own production and message, every attempt he has made to expand beyond radio has resulted in notable faux pas and spectacular crash and burns.

Rush's basic midwestern moneyed whitebread opinions are the backbone of his three hour daily rant. He is the scion of a powerful family that has treated southern Missouri as a feifdom for decades.

His audience has not grown or evolved over the past 15 years. It is a mature market that dependably fills a three hour mid-day slot in a dying medium. Let's remember that Rush is only successful on radio, for crissakes.

Rush's current bid for greater middle of the road acceptance is based on his realization that his audience die off (they are largely very O-L-D) is accelerating.

Let Rush run around with enough rope and he hangs himself every time. That's the real entertainment with Rush. The Epic Fail for him is still out there somewhere and the excitement is the expectation that he will eventually find it and self-immolate in fullpublic view.

Posted by: roboturkey | October 14, 2009 11:56 AM

Ah, yes: here are JaxMax, ekim53 and lmarkex back again from Conservapedia Headquarters (where they have been involved in trying to re-write the Bible to expunge it of its "liberal bias"), all ready, willing, able and eager to lick Rush Limbaugh's fat ar$e. lmarkex has even expressed a willingness to boycott the NFL if they don't give his fat racist hero a shot at buying the team. Sigh. Please go back to Conservapedia Headquarters, and take your idiotic opinions with you.

Posted by: chert | October 14, 2009 12:10 PM

Stick to JUST football, dude- I felt sorry for you as I was reading this.

You sound like an idiot.

And you misspelled Oxycontin.


Posted by: JackMehoff | October 14, 2009 12:12 PM


Obviously you're back on the stuff that makes you sound stupid.

Better get off it before you really say something outrageous.

Back to your coloring books and crayons.

Posted by: LarryG62 | October 14, 2009 12:19 PM

That's all the nfl needs now, a racist, blowhard drug addict!

Posted by: Socialistic | October 14, 2009 12:22 PM

Rush only wants to buy an NFL team to have easier access to illegal drugs.

The closer he gets to an overdose the happier I'll be. Let him in, Goodell. He DESERVES to own the rams.

Posted by: Stuck_In_Traffic | October 14, 2009 12:28 PM


I don't need your sympathy sir. Perhaps Rush and his denied bid might, but I don't. Oh, and if misspelling a pharmaceutical is somehow a defining characteristic, apparently, I've completely failed at life.


Oh look, I "misspelled" my reaction as well. Following your rationale, I must really need to stick to football.

Anyway, back to the issue, it's funny how those you label idiots are those you disagree with. Apparently, the only way to make you happy would be to blast Goodell for not protecting precious Rush.

I'm happy to have disappointed you.

Posted by: IFChris | October 14, 2009 12:30 PM

Right, and if Al Sharpton was part of a group trying to buy an NFL franchise you would condemn him equally.

Double standard.

Posted by: alstl | October 14, 2009 12:46 PM

If Limbaugh wins, the US loses.
His 15 mins. of fame are over he offers more of the same spin and lies, like bush/cheney.
Perhaps we can just ignore yet another angry white republican man.

Posted by: jama452 | October 14, 2009 12:49 PM

"Outspoken behavior," Chris? Actually, what Goodell said would not be welcome in the league are "divisive" and "polarizing" comments. Which is funny, because Dan Rooney pretty much lined his team up as a stage prop for Barack Obama's campaign last year, and he now serves as Obama's ambassador to Ireland. And, sorry to tell you, close to 50% of the electorate voted for somebody else. I guess, though, some "polarizing" behavior is more equal than others.

Stay vigilant on keeping part-owners with conservative views out of the NFL, Chris. Convicted criminals on rosters are one thing, but enough's enough.

Posted by: DellC | October 14, 2009 1:02 PM


I'm sorry, where did I say Rush shouldn't be an owner? I simply said the way this thing has played out is not surprising.

On either side.

Does Rush court controversy, and in doing so, does it help further his image? I think we know the answer here. Now, are there current NFL owners who share Rush's viewpoints?

I'm sure there are.

The difference, however, is they don't vocalize their derisive opinions in public forums, just to enjoy the reaction their rhetoric elicits.

If Rush wants to be apart of the NFL, he'll need to improve his 40-yard dash time.

One last thing, it seems this is being compared to the Michael Vick situation, and this goes back to Rush's 40-yard dash time. If he could run around the field the way Vick does, he'd be welcome as a player, personal beliefs be damned.

Conversely, if you think the owners would allow Vick to join their consortium, especially when you consider the extensive background check they perform, you're probably fooling yourself.

Posted by: IFChris | October 14, 2009 1:15 PM

Chris, fair enough on players vs. owners. Performance on the field is always going to trump behavior.

But, come on, maybe you didn't explicitly say Limbaugh shouldn't be an owner, but are you seriously telling me I should infer some kind of neutrality on that question on your part? Are you telling me your post wasn't meant to tilt anti-Limbaugh? I mean, what does Oxycontin have to do with anything? You know our President used drugs at one time in his life, too, right? And not because he became hooked on them to treat pain, but purely as a recreational activity?

You don't know if Limbaugh opines "just to enjoy the reaction," so that's irrelevant, as well as ad hominem. (And, by the way, your post is as “derisive” as anything Limbaugh says. Why do you get to play by different rules?) To the original point, though, there are other owners who are happy to give us their opinions - and I gave you an example of one who not only did so, but intertwined his team's brand along the way. I get it, though: you gave the game away by telling me you're cool with owners who share Limbaugh's views because they keep their mouths shut – but you had nothing to say about Dan Rooney, because he thinks the "right" way.

I don't care if a conservative or liberal owns a team, as long as he or she is a good owner. Seems like that's better than a double standard, doesn't it? I'm not sure why Dan Snyder or Al Davis is preferable to a part-owner who loves the game of football and will bring a success ethic to a pathetic franchise.

Posted by: DellC | October 14, 2009 2:09 PM

The real question here is - what does Rush 'win'? He can smoke his fat stogies lit by $1000 bills in his private jet and it still leaves him who he is - a miserable human being who contributes no goodness to humankind anywhere.

Posted by: FactChecker1 | October 14, 2009 2:39 PM


The fact we are even talking about it, and him, means he wins. Surely you understand just how important publicity is to him.


The Oxycontin thing was more to show Rush is pretty bulletproof, at least in the eyes of his followers. And no matter what kind of press he gets from the St Louis Rams buy attempt, the fact we are talking about him is, judging by his method of doing business, an acceptable outcome.

Rush has every right to be interested in buying the Rams, just like the NFL Owners and its front office has every right to vote against him. Would I root for a team he owned? Doubtful, but if he has the necessary finances and the owners approve his "membership," more power to him.

The problem is, the way he's delivered his message over the years means he won't get approved. Now, is that NFL's fault or Rush's?

Posted by: IFChris | October 14, 2009 2:52 PM

Who knows, Chris? I would say it's the fault of both.

Thanks for the exchange.

Posted by: DellC | October 14, 2009 4:08 PM

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