MLS is a league DESIGNED to lose money. To make the correct assessment, take a look at Soccer United Marketing. Of course, there's a lot of nuance to this, because you have major markets where the league is buried and second tier markets where it's kicking butt. Furthermore, look who's actually (1) building stadia, and (2) eh, expanding one with his own money. That "free ride" comment is laughably ill-informed. But one last... maybe the best thing to happen to American soccer would be the death of MLS BECAUSE of what would replace it. Just food for thought there.
In an earlier rant, it was inferred to focus on "the fault" (as if it were a problem to be solved) being Merritt Paulson. So let's rewind back a moment. Paulson buys this outfit in 2007 and starts throwing around the idea of renaming the Beavers to Wet Sox or something like that. Meanwhile, while there's a whole staff of baseball people trying to give the guy ideas, he needs only take a look at what's actually happening in the stands. It wasn't long after the purchase before the organization literally started advertising series-by-series sales of luxury suites for the Beavers. Meanwhile, he points to the 3,000-per-night in the North End for Timbers games at that time and shows the staff who's actually paying the bills. Which- mind you- is only something he might have casually aided. The reason I mentioned that Portland State MUST worry about attendance first is that it drives everything at this level. Portland only financially got MLS because of Merritt Paulson's father. It mostly got MLS because of Timbers Army. (A quote from a former journalist and still author in town- "Seattle has fans because they got MLS; Portland got MLS because they have fans.") Paulson, the city, the media, the people NOW in the organization Paulson runs... while Paulson really wants to push the team among the $$ elite in town, they all know in the back of their minds where the bread is buttered. This city has had serious turnover, so it doesn't respect the history of this matter, and won't for the foreseeable future. This is the Church Of What's Happening Now. To make a dent in that, Portland State has to be a better Portland State.
How you get there, I don't know. I do know why Alan talks about the future of the sport of football (and there's kind of a constant social media drumbeat leading into this season about how numbers are down again in HS ball), concerns over concussions are at the top of many people's minds, and most important, insurance costs are only increasing and at a substantial rate.
The contract issue has already been discussed. Paulson hears far more about putting grass in the stadium than he does accommodating PSU. Hillsboro is probably too big for PSU's "ambitions" at this point, sadly. How do you fix that?