Despite the apparent league eagerness for a St. Louis MLS team, a firm ownership group still needs to be finalized — but there’s the chance the group could include former St. Louis Rams players.
The MLS2STL group — formed after the NFL gave permission for the Rams to move back to Los Angeles for the 2016 season — has been operating under the radar for the past few months. This comes when interest in MLS expansion is at an all-time high and league officials include St. Louis as a contender for a future team. But a St. Louis MLS team faces some huge obstacles, including any funding of a new stadium. But some of the MLS2STL group, such as former Anheuser-Busch exec Dave Peacock, worked on the effort to keep the Rams at a new downtown stadium. Other potential investors include sports-industry leaders Bill DeWitt III, president of the St. Louis Cardinals and St. Louis Blues CEO Chris Zimmerman. On the business side, the group features World Wide Technology CEO Jim Kavanaugh, UniGroup President Jim Powers, former NFL task force co-chairman Dave Peacock, local hotelier Bob O’Loughlin, FleishmanHillard Senior Vice President Jim Woodcock and Vicky Lynch of Lynch Sports and Events.
And if a St. Louis MLS team happens, some former Rams could be in the investment group. We know that former Ram Chris Long has been in contact with investors, and he’s confirmed that discussions have continued. Other former Rams have been approached, but they’re considerably more low-key in their enthusiasm for the project. Here’s what former Rams DB Aeneas Williams says:
Williams did say he has “communicated” with Peacock on the subject.
“But only in keeping in contact with him to see how that project is going. No commitments or anything like that. There’s not anything imminent right now. Just keeping in contact, checking the pulse, and seeing how the project is going.”
But on the subject of being a part owner, Williams also added, “I wouldn’t rule out anything. This community, soccer is huge here. I don’t understand a lot of components of soccer. But for it to be the world’s No.1 sport is something certainly we better take a look at.”
That certainly indicates nothing being imminent for a St. Louis MLS team.
Rendering dates from a previous effort to bring MLS to St. Louis; it does not reflect any current plans.
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