Posts Tagged ‘National Football League’


March 8, 2008


Memo to Clay Bennett: Moving a professional sports franchise
can do more to make you universally hated than any other act in America.


Richard Nixon was a figure of scorn and derision
during his political career. At one point he was
perhaps the most reviled American of the 20th century.
Upon his death, in 1994, author Hunter S. Thompson
called him a monster “straight out of Grendel” adding
Nixon was the type of guy who “lied to his friends”
and “betrayed his family.”

In writing Nixon’s obituary (which he gleefully
titled, “He was a Crook”), Thompson quoted Gerald Ford
as saying, “I know I will go to hell, because I
pardoned Richard Nixon.”


(God, I miss Hunter S. Thompson)

Still, upon his death, in 1994, hundreds of people
attended Nixon’s funeral including Bill Clinton, Ronald Reagan, Jimmy Carter and Gerald Ford. Hell, Billy Graham did the eulogy and pundits and analysts had no shortage of good things to say about the man.


There is no such redemption for sports owners. Word is
upon the death of Indianapolis Colts owner, Bob Irsay,
in 1997, they had a hard time finding six people to
carry the casket.  After he moved his football team to
Baltimore, Cleveland Browns owner, Art Modell,
literally could not set foot in his home town ever
again out of fear for his safety.

However, no matter how hated Irsay and Modell were and no matter how many legions of fans thought they were money-grubbing scumbags, at least nobody ever accused them of MURDER!


Another former National Football League owner died earlier this year. Georgia Frontiere passed away January 18th from breast cancer. She was 80-years-old.

Of course, in reporting her death, it was noted that Frontiere was the first female owner in American sports history.

However, every single obituary of Frontiere I could find also mentioned two other things about her life.

1) She was married seven times

2) She was a former Vegas Showgirl (much like the abhorrent Rachel Phelps in the movie Major League)


There’s one other thing her obituaries mentioned that I was unaware of (maybe I wasn’t old enough). Husband number seven, famed musical composer, Dominic Frontiere, was sent to jail for scalping Super Bowl tickets-while he was married to an N.F.L. owner! Frontiere actually sold thousands of pairs of tickets then refused to pay taxes on the income. Frontiere divorced him while he was in prison. Some say he got off easy.  At least he didn’t die a violent death under mysterious circumstances like a couple of her other exes. But, hey, I digress…

A couple of Frontiere’s obituaries felt compelled to point out that she was living in sin at the age of 80 at the time of her death to some guy named Earle Weatherwax.

And that’s the mainstream media!

How about what the blogs had to say?

This is from thehaternation immediately after Frontiere’s death:

Georgia Frontandrearie regrets
10. Always wanted to fund a final season of “The O.C.” so she could move the setting from beautiful Orange County, to some Mid-West slum.
9. No more late-night joy rides with Leonard Little.
8. Always wanted to go out like Catherine the Great.
7. O.J. never found the real killers. (Unsolved murders really bothered her.)
6. Never hooked up with Robert Irsay to spawn the anti-Christ.
5. Never actually succeeded in her lark to steal candy from a baby.
4. Failed to learn the intricacies of football like the Cover-2 defense or what “NFL” meant.
3. Was a showgirl before they started making real money.
2. She killed a person, yet she didn’t get to be the First Lady.
1. Only outlived Al Davis by 15 years.

Another blog maintained “Furman Bisher killed newspapers the way Georgia killed husbands.”


I received an e-mail from a female friend today. She had seen this blog and was giving me her feedback on it…

Hey Mike,
People love to blog.
I think it’s great! Although i’m shocked at how mean you can be. But, i guess that entertainment.
I hope all is well!


Well, thanks for the constructive criticism, but after reading those blogs that were written IMMEDIATELY after the woman’s  death, let me say this- when it comes to “mean,” I’M NOT SHIT! I’M NOTHING.  I was particularly in awe of calling a dead octogenarian “Front-and-Rearie.” Nice touch, my friend!

 Now, I understand that’s an LA blog, and as a native of Southern California I also understand the animosity people there still have for Georgia Frontiere. After all, she took football away from the number two city in the nation FOREVER.

However, controversy followed Georgia Frontiere throughout her entire life.

Or, as a Tampa Tribune article once referred to her, Georgia Irwin Geiger Johnson Wyler Hayes Rosenbloom Frontiere.

That Tribune article was written in 2000 and actually broke down the deaths and divorces of all of Frontiere’s husbands. Let’s just say that at least a couple of these guys died under pretty violent and mysterious circumstances.

 And, coincidentally, in each of these cases Frontiere benefitted directly from the outcome.

Frontiere’s marriages date all the way back to 1943. When she was 15 Frontiere eloped with a soldier who went off to fight in World War II. This guy was the first of Georgia’s husbands to die a violent and premature death. However, I’m willing to give Georgia a pass on hubby number one since in all likelihood he was done in by the Nazis.  That marriage was later annulled.

Another of Frontiere’s dead husbands was actually hit by a bus. She had been offered a big role in a Vegas show. Her husband stopped her from taking the part. (Well, at least before the bus.) His death allowed Georgia to move immediately to Las Vegas where she took the starring role in a stage show there. Frontiere eventually married the Vegas guy who hired her as a showgirl.


From there she moved on to husband number five who, after the wedding, hired Frontiere as a tv weather girl in Miami.

However, it was always her marriage to former Los Angeles Rams and Baltimore Colts owner, Carroll Rosenbloom, that drew the most controversy.  The two first met in 1957 when he was 52. She was 30. Both were married.  They were actually introduced by Joseph Kennedy (father of future president and serial philanderer, John F. Kennedy.)

 The two later married. Shortly after Rosenbloom altered his will (his son says for tax purposes) he was found dead. Despite being a champion swimmer, and someone who swam in the ocean every day, Rosenbloom reportedly drowned on a day with very mild currents.


In what was either a case of incredibly irresponsible journalism or one of the most underreported stories OF ALL TIME the first ever episode of the PBS investigative series Frontline did a story on the seamy underside of the N.F.L.

In that show PBS showed the incredibly gruesome autopsy photos of  Carroll Rosenbloom. They also interviewed reported “underworld figures” who claimed they drowned Rosenbloom by holding him under water (another wild rumor had Rosenbloom drowning in a hot tub with Frontiere.) The death was eventually ruled an accidental drowning.

In any event, Georgia showed up LATE for Rosenbloom’s funeral then, within months, fired her stepson (who had risen from ball boy to team president over a lifetime of work) and married The Ticket Scalper. She then moved the Los Angeles Rams to her home town of St. Louis and the rest, as they say, is history.

Like each of Georgia Frontiere’s husbands.