In the video below, Gov. Bill Haslam reacts to news that the Tennessee Titans on Tuesday axed head coach Ken Wisenhut midway through what’s shaping up to be a wretched season.
Haslam, who was concluding a press conference at the Capitol announcing the addition of a new education official to his administration, said there’s a clear economic benefit to the state and local communities when pro sports clubs are successful.
“Professional sports teams matter to the states and the cities that they are it,” Haslam said. “That is true of the Preds and the Titans here, and it is true of the Grizzlies in Memphis. They do impact the local economy. Obviously, people come to a lot more games and spend a lot more money in restaurants and on merchandise when they are winning. We are a sales-tax-driven state so there is a connection.”
Haslam was also asked whether he thinks it likely the Titans organization, which transplanted to Nashville from Houston in 1997, would consider picking up stakes and moving to the Los Angeles, which is looking to lure away an NFL team.
“I will be shocked if the Titans think about moving away from here,” said the governor.
Since 2008, when they posted the best regular season record in the NFL with 13 wins and 3 losses, the Titans have managed only one winning season. Last year they went 2-14. In 2015 the Titans have lost six games and won just one.