Voting on the Colts and Candidates

Based on a 1-2 start, the Indianapolis Colts are on track to win five games in the 2012 season. As the season kicked off, we asked for your prediction on the number of victories in the post-Peyton Manning era. The most popular answer matches the current pace.

  • 4-5 wins: 47%
  • 6-7 wins: 28%
  • 8 or more wins: 17%
  • 3 or fewer wins: 8%

Of course, the 1-2 should be 2-1 (an 80-yard TD allowed in the final two minutes against Jacksonville was unforgivable). The continued improvement of Andrew Luck, injuries and so many other factors will determine the ultimate outcome.

Our new question returns to politics. Tell us (upper right) what result you most look forward to seeing on November 6.

Celebrating the Grand(est) Award of All

Awards are cool. It’s always nice to be recognized for one’s work. We’re fortunate at the Indiana Chamber’s BizVoice magazine to fairly routinely (but never taken for granted) earn accolades for writing, design and overall publication excellence.

The latest of the 60 national and state awards is a big one – a Grand Award in the APEX Awards for Publication Excellence. 

The winning entry was “Let’s Make a (Business) Deal,” a five-article package written by Rebecca Patrick and Tom Schuman in the September-October 2011 edition. Stories included a focus on deals involving the Colts’ move to Indianapolis, different paths to growth for Franklin Electric and Herff Jones, information and analysis from authorities in the "business deal" world and a one-on-one interview with Mickey Maurer,  leading dealmaker in both the private and public sectors.

There were nearly 3,400 APEX entrants with only 100 earning the Grand Award, a first for BizVoice in this competition. In the writing categories, BizVoice earned one of 10 Grand Awards among 580 entrants. Although this was a writing category, kudos also go to creative director Tony Spataro for his design work on this package. The words shine a little more when there is a strong look to the articles and publication.

The judges’ comments on the winning entry: "Superbly researched, interviewed and written articles on the ‘art of the business deal.’ A range of valuable information from case histories to anecdotes to specific tips makes this series a worthwhile read."

Check out the stories under “Deal or No Deal.” If you are not receiving BizVoice®, subscribe today. Finally, special advertising opportunities in Indiana’s leading business magazine are available by contacting Jim Wagner at [email protected].

In addition, the work of Matt Ottinger (and others who contribute to this Building a Better Indiana blog) earned an Award of Excellence in the blog category. 

How the Colts Came to Indy

I was a kid when the Colts moved from Baltimore to Indianapolis, but do have vivid recollections of watching the events unfold on TV. Just over two decades later, I was a lucky spectator at the RCA Dome witnessing the team beat the New England Patriots en route to the 2007 Super Bowl win. In short, I pretty much can’t remember what my sport’s life was like without the team.

For the Chamber’s September/October issue of BizVoice ® magazine (available here on Friday), we explore the deal that made it all happen. Below are some bonus quotes not found in that story.

Bill Hudnut, then mayor of Indianapolis and current Maryland resident:

“I was elated! I remember signing the papers on that Wednesday afternoon and then Thursday morning I did not announce it because I did not want to scare off (Colts owner Robert) Irsay or antagonize him by doing a premature announcement. His people had to do it first and they did middle of the day on Thursday. So I said how terrific it was and I had a news conference that afternoon.”

David Frick, then deputy mayor and attorney for the city of Indianapolis, on his role and the local movers and shakers involved:

“There was a small group the mayor convened called the 706 club; that was the room number at the Columbia Club where we used to meet. The mayor had brought together Herb Simon, Jim Morris, P.E. MacAllister, who was chairman of the Capital Improvement Board, and Tom Moses, who headed up the water company. Of all people in our community he (Moses) probably had the most connections with NFL owners; he used to work for the Murchison family that owned the Dallas Cowboys for a number of years.

“I would sit down with that group and we would talk about where we were in the negotiation, what changes we would want to make to our offer and get their input on steps to take. I’m fortunate in getting credit for bringing the Colts to Indianapolis, but there were other people heavily involved in the process who helped guide that negotiation.

“I really made my living both as a lawyer, and then I’ve spent the bulk of my career outside of being a lawyer, doing deals. And each deal has its unique characteristic. … But this is clearly the one that has had the most impact on the biggest number of people. It wasn’t the toughest, but to get the Colts deal done in a compressed timeframe (six weeks) and to have such a significant impact was very personally satisfying to me.”

Making the Move to Indy, Colts Style

Home football game this weekend for the Colts – OK, it is preseason. But excitement is still definitely building for NFL fans. After all, Indianapolis is hosting the next Super Bowl.

With that milestone event coming up, it’s a good time to reflect on the Colts and how they came to be our team.

In the September/October issue of the Chamber’s BizVoice ® magazine (in the mail and available online August 26), we do just that. I spoke to those who were most heavily involved in the big move – and they had many great recollections. Here’s one amusing story in detail not found in the magazine article.

Michael Chernoff¸ then legal counsel and negotiator for the Baltimore Colts, on the media and the actual relocation:

“When I flew from Indianapolis to Baltimore to supervise the move, one of the executives of Mayflower (the company that moved the team) flew with us. When we landed in Baltimore, the press was already there. My guess was somebody in the tower called the press and said the Colts plane is on its way in. We got off of the plane and were met by one of the Colts people in a car that originally was going to take us to the complex, but with all the press there and everything, I didn’t want to go there.

“So instead he drove us to a motel down the road from the complex and we checked in there. It was a two-story motel; he went to his room and I went to my room. We talked a little bit and every time I would open my door to go out, the TV antenna on the trucks would go up, they’d turn on their motors and they were ready to go. I couldn’t go anywhere without bringing them with me.

“I called the guy from Mayflower and said, ‘I know where your room is, go across to the motel next door and when you get there, call me and let me know if anybody saw you.’ They didn’t. I said, ‘Sit tight, I’ll have somebody pick you up.’ I then sat around for a couple of hours. By this time I was getting hungry, so I went across the street with the (press) entourage to have a bite. I called the complex and they said, ‘Don’t worry, the press is already here. You might as well come out.’ So, I did. We finished up the move well into the night. … And then we picked up the franchise certificate that the NFL issued to the Colts many years before, put it on the plane and the group of us flew back to Indianapolis to set up shop.”