If you don't listen to Going Deep with Aaron Watson, you should probably start. Recently, Aaron had one a whole slew of ultimate-related people going over a ton of topics relevant to the community in different ways. Up Call is going to bring you some show-notes from these shows, and help make sure you can get out and support Aaron's podcast.
First, Aaron's interview with Jim Gerencser - owner of the Dallas Roughnecks, investor into the Philadelphia Phoenix, co-founder of Early Recognition is Critical (E.R.I.C.), and founder of Nationwide Auto Services (aka, this company).
- First impression of pro-ultimate was from his son, who said "I always thought you'd own a pro-ultimate team"
- Jim contacted the MLU, and they "seemed more like a time-share"
- He liked the ability the AUDL provided him of being able to own his own team, run the finances, etc. - all on his own
- But really first contacted the AUDL to get E.R.I.C. involved with them
- When he bought the Roughnecks, he didn't know that the South Division was in the works
- "I'm going to try to put together the same team together next year [Roughnecks]"
On tension between USAU and the AUDL:
* He's "not such a purist" with the game as USAU is * Players missing games for USAU-committments was "interesting", but something the players had to do * Describes himself as a "players owner" * Says he's totally onboard with players going to Worlds, practices, etc.
On the Philadelphia Phoenix:
* "Plans are to build up the Philadelphia franchise" * Goal is to support/build-up the team * Already got confirmation from one of the World's top-25 players (probably Nicky Spiva that he's going to play there * "Absolutely going to try to put together a team that's going to win the East next year"
On the AUDL in general:
* "I think if you start paying guys enough money, you can start doing that [demand commitment expectations on players by pro teams] ... otherwise... all in it because we love ultimate, and that's the priority." * "My priority is to grow ultimate ... teach youth to play, and grow them as fans" * "Top priority [of the AUDL] is to reach the outside [market]" * AUDL is requiring all to record their games, which can help them get their games out to fans * "I'm #3 guy spending money in ultimate right now ... not that I have more money, it's my passion" * "If we're going to get a sponsor, it's going to come now from 2nd-gen ultimate player's parents, that's the low-hanging fruit right now" * First started Ditch (media company) to have a company that could support making commercials for sponsors that included ultimate players.
On the Phoenix/Spinners relationship, and the MLU:
* "Not aimed at them [the MLU/Spinners]" * "Going to sit down with them [players on the Spinners], and see if there's a possibility of them playing for the team [Phoenix] next year" * "I think they [the MLU] are going away without us trying to do that" * "[the] MLU is a great league for what they're doing, but it's B-level players" ... "they've still got a great product, and do some things better than what the AUDL does" ... "but I think we've [AUDL] got a better product, for one-thing on the field"