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Spanos anxious to start season

Discussion in 'Chargers Fan Forum' started by wrbanwal, Sep 2, 2008.

  1. wrbanwal

    wrbanwal Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    I know there is a lot of "Owner Speak" here but.........


    To me, this team is owned and operated by the Spanos family. I just don't for the life of me see them selling and/or moving. They sound to me like SD is the place to be.

    Maybe it's just the beer talking but DAMMIT!! DON'T LEAVE SD!!!


    http://chargers.com/news/headlines/spanos-anxious-to.htm


    Chargers President Dean Spanos is about to kick off his 25th season with the team and his 15th in his current position. Spanos feels he has reason to be optimistic about the 2008 Bolts and earlier this week, he sat down with Chargers.com to share his thoughts on the upcoming season.

    The season is finally here. Describe your feelings going into the new season.

    “I feel pretty good going into this season. We ended on a bittersweet note at the end of last season. Had we not had the injuries, the outcome might have been different. I think the one thing that last year proved is that Norv Turner is the coach we thought he was and this team proved that it’s resilient. The fact that the team overcame the 1-3 start said a lot about their character. It was difficult at the beginning, but in the end they proved to me that this team can play with any team in the National Football League. That gives this team a lot of confidence going into the season.”

    With the bittersweet way last season ended, are you particularly ready to get this one going?

    “I think so and I think you can see it in the players’ eyes. They’re ready for this season! The attitude is a little different. I feel like they’re more focused. Not they that weren’t last year, but they’re not listening to the hype and the prognosticators. They’re just focused on day-to-day preparation and doing their jobs.”

    What do you think when you read all of the predictions about the Chargers this year, including many that believe the team is going to the Super Bowl?

    “I don’t put stock into any of that because it really doesn’t mean anything. You don’t really know from season to season. Every year is different and every year stands on its own. You’ve just got to go out every week, play and see what happens and then move on to the next game. You hope you make the playoffs at the end and then it’s a new season.”

    Are you pleased with the way the players have seemed to handle the expectations and say the right things?

    “Yeah, it’s not just the fact they’re saying the right things; they believe them. I think it’s also Norv’s leadership. He’s a veteran coach and has experience. This team has matured. You look at some of our leaders now. This is LT’s eighth season. It’s hard to believe, but he’s been here eight years and has been one of the leaders. He sets the example for a lot of the players in that locker room.”

    What makes you optimistic about the season?

    “If you look back, we’ve consistently had winning seasons the last four seasons and been in the playoffs three out of the last four years. We have the same core group of players that we had four or five years ago. It’s a maturing team as we go along and we’re continuing to build depth as we go along. That puts us in a situation where if there is an injury we’re able to overcome that. I think that’s a sign of a good team where you have good starters and depth behind them. We’ve had continuity and this team believes in itself. I think that is going to give us the opportunity we need to compete for a World Championship.”

    What concerns do you have about the team and the season?

    “Just injuries. I think injuries are always a key concern. Everybody talks about being good, lucky and injury free. Those are the three things that really dictate your season. Injuries seem to be the key thing.”

    How do you think the team will perform this year in Norv Turner’s second season compared to his first season last year?

    “When you have good coaches and good players, I think the more you play together the better you get. You would just think in the natural course of events that this season should be better just based on the fact that we started 1-3 last year and ended up in the AFC Championship Game. We learned a lot last year about the character of the players and coaches, and the leadership of the head coach. I think everyone believes in themselves and I think there’s nothing this team can’t accomplish.”

    When you’ve watched Philip Rivers this spring and summer, have you been amazed at how he’s handled his recovery from reconstructive knee surgery?

    “No, he’s that type of guy. He’s the type of guy that always defies the odds. He’ll prove you wrong every time. He had the surgery and he was committed and very aggressive in his rehab. The result is that he’s out there playing right now.”

    Antoine Cason and Jacob Hester have shown potential this training camp and preseason. What are your thoughts on this rookie class?

    “They’re fine young players, but I think they’re coming into a good football team with good veteran leaders. It’s a team that’s an ascending team and they have a great opportunity to learn from the veteran players, not only how to play but how to act and carry themselves as professionals.”

    The Chargers continue to lock up their young players with eight contract extensions since December. Why is that important to you and what does it mean for the Chargers’ future?

    “We want to create continuity. These are good young players. It’s been a belief of mine and of A.J. Smith that continuity is the key to success. We want to keep our core players together as long as we possibly can. We identify the players who can compete, have good character and we sign them. We’re not afraid to sign them before their contracts are up.”

    This spring your son John was promoted to Director of College Scouting and this summer you promoted your oldest son A.G. to Executive Vice President/Executive Officer. Describe what these changes mean to the organization and, personally, what they mean to you.

    “Both of them have worked in the NFL offices and with the team for a number of years and have worked their way up. John interned in the football operations department, spent three years in the NFL’s Management Council before returning to San Diego as a college and pro scout. He’s had a chance to work more on the player evaluation side and on contract negations with Ed McGuire. I think everyone has seen him rise up through the ranks and he’s earned it because he started from the bottom.

    “A.G. started as an intern also and worked in football operations and business development at the league office. Then he spent a season in London in the NFL Europe offices. He came back to the Chargers as Assistant Director of Marketing and worked his way up to Director of Marketing Programs and Business Development. He’s had a chance to see all the different facets of the business side of the operation. He’s moved up to Executive Officer working in all aspects of the business.

    “They’ve grown within the organization and seen how it operates since they were kids. As a father, I’m very proud to see them succeed. Nothing makes you more proud.”



    :bolt::bolt::bolt:
     

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