Glendale councilman: ‘Mr. Bidwill is very tough’
Jan 31, 2014, 10:00 PM | Updated: Feb 1, 2014, 4:52 pm
To host a Super Bowl, a city must also be able to host the event’s attendees.
Right now, Glendale may not be able to do that second part all that well, despite their commitment to the first in 2015.
With area hotels refusing to guarantee a certain number of rooms at particular pricepoints, the Arizona Cardinals now fear that the city of Glendale will lack the necessary, affordable accommodations for those traveling to the Super Bowl.
Cardinals President Michael Bidwill, who serves on the 2015 Super Bowl planning committee, called the city of Glendale’s activity to date in the planning “selfish” while a guest on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM The Dan Bickley Show with Vince Marotta on Thursday at Radio Row in New York.
Glendale city councilman Gary Sherwood joined the show Friday to try to explain the situation.
“We’ve had several conversations with Mr. Bidwill and he’s walked out of a few,” Sherwood began in his response.
“The biggest thing is the number of hotel (rooms).”
A Cardinals spokesman disputes Sherwood’s charge, however, noting that while Bidwill has previously met with other city representatives, he’s never met with the alleging councilman himself, nor has he ever walked out of such a meeting.
An email received by Arizona Sports from that Cardinals spokesman refutes Sherwood’s claim.
I looked into it and learned that Bidwill has never met with Sherwood on this or any other topic. He did meet twice with other Glendale officials on this and while nothing was resolved no one ever walked out of any of them.
The councilman, who was instrumental in negotiations between the Phoenix Coyotes and the city last summer, went on to break down the situation to listeners, essentially stating that his council was unable to twist the arms of the privately-owned hotels into upping their guaranteed rooms and lowering their prices. Such an action, he explained, wasn’t any of the city’s business and was, in fact, illegal.
And, according to Sherwood, that’s the gist of Bidwill’s allegations against the city. Glendale, he says, is plenty selfless.
“We were lauded for our spirit of cooperation in 2008 and really nothing has changed,” Sherwood told the show.
“We have cooperated, fully engaged everyone, tried to participate — we’ve just been shut out. The host committee has even shut us out from being in New York this week.”
As for the reason for the conflict between the Cardinals, the committee and the council, Sherwood can only guess.
“It may be left over a little bit from our lack of cooperation in the training camp scenario and the fact that we don’t have a parking garage,” he said. “And again, our lack of arm-twisting with the hotels which, again, legally we can’t do.”
After then pointing to the parking debacle as a context for Bidwill to undercharge and thus “spite” the city, Sherwood concluded, “Mr. Bidwill is very tough; it goes along with that NFL mentality.”