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Friday, September 14, 2012
Jags won't allow for blackouts this season

By Paul Kuharsky

A couple of smaller stories or notes this week served to solidify the Jaguars’ new thinking regarding blackouts.

I just spoke with Jaguars president Mark Lamping to hear for myself and get it all on the record here. Lamping, who joined the team during the offseason, brings new thinking to the issue: He wants it not to be an issue at all.

Gone is the barometer on the team's website gauging day-to-day ticket sales and telling fans how close the team is to selling the 50,000 general bowl seats needed to avoid a local blackout of home games.

“We don’t sell tickets to avoid blackouts,” Lamping said. “We sell tickets to create revenue and to create a home-field advantage.”

The Jaguars haven’t had a blackout in two years, but talk of the possibility was still a prevalent storyline before virtually every home game. Lamping called it a “negative sales proposition.”

That’s over, Lamping said.

“We’re in good shape. We certainly have some tickets available, but all of our games are going to be televised locally,” he said. “We’re just going to turn the page on blackouts.”

Owner Shahid Khan can assure that by paying 34 cents on the dollar for the seats needed to be sold by the Thursday before a game.

“We feel good where we are,” Lamping said. “We’re not going to have to buy tickets for this week.”