Steelers' President Art Rooney II was the featured interview on Wednesday at the Veritix Sports Facilities & Franchises 2014 and Ticketing Symposium at the Marriott City Center in Pittsburgh.
During his interview session, titled 'A Look at a Franchise Rich in History and Glory,' Rooney discussed his role in the franchise, his family's history in the NFL and the state of the NFL. He also talked about his management style, his relationship with the Steelers' fan base, the strength of the Steelers brand and what the Steelers mean to the city of Pittsburgh.
Some of the highlights of his interview were the following;
- Stability is an asset in an organization and something the Steelers feel strongly about.
- There is a new sports fan, new generation that expects different things and you constantly have to improve.
- Can't let the business of football get in the way of the game of football.
- Immaculate Reception was the turning point for the Steelers.
- Not sold on the idea that the NFL must have a team in London to be successful in Europe.
- Sees a team in Los Angeles in the next 10 years.
- Believes playoffs will expand before the NFL goes to a 17 or 18 game schedule.
The event drew sports professionals from all over the country, and Rooney was thrilled to showcase Pittsburgh to them.
"Number one, Pittsburgh is known as a sports town," said Rooney. "I think it's part of the brand of the city. Attracting a conference like this that brings a lot of people from the sports industry is a great opportunity to show the city to a lot of different people."
Other activities those attending participated in were a tour and reception at Heinz Field, seeing the Pirates play the Chicago Cubs at PNC Park and a tour of Consol Energy Center.
"We have a lot of great assets here, particularly sports related assets that I think around the country are not as well known as we would like them to be," said Rooney. "It's a great opportunity to bring people in and let them see what we have here and hopefully lay some ground work to bring more events and conferences like this back to the city."