New Jacksonville Jaguars owner Shahid Khan made a major personnel change Monday, dismissing Paul…
Khan Era Officially Underway
They closed the book Wednesday on the Wayne Weaver era when his sale of the team to Illinois businessman Shad Khan was completed with a wire transfer of electronic funds.
Khan sent $660 million -- a chunk of it a line of credit -- to Weaver, the team's founding owner, and his partners and also assumed $110 million in debt to make the purchase price $770 million.
In this digital age, no checks were written when the ownership was transferred.
In an appearance on "Jaguars This Week" on WOKV, Khan joked, "I did have to break some piggy banks this morning."
He added, "It's a great feeling, the check cleared," even though it was done electronically.
He also sounded as if the Jaguars will be in the family for a long time.
"Absolutely," he said. "As a matter of fact, I told both my kids, 'If you sell the team after I'm dead, I'm going to haunt you forever.'"
He also said his son Tony may be involved in the team.
"He would like to be involved very much. And I think as we set up the organization, I think I'll see what makes sense for him. This is very much a family business so to speak, but it has to be a meritocracy and it has to be something he can contribute. Being the owner's son, yes, has advantages. It has disadvantages, too. The worst thing I'd want to do is set him up for failure," he said.
He also told the Florida Times-Union that only he and general manager Gene Smith know the candidates for the head coaching vacancy and that they already know the top three candidates.
They've already interviewed candidates, including interim head coach Mel Tucker.
He said that fans will be surprised at how fast they name the coach.
Of what he is looking for in a head coach, he said, "First of all, chemistry. Chemistry with me, with Gene, really the whole organization. That person has to connect. We don't want an egomaniac who's going to come in with their system and basically, we'd be cleaning up the mess three years from now. They have to be a winner and they have to engage in the community. Those are really the three key things we are going to look for."
He added, "To me, this is not about money. You want to pay people a fair wage. This is about finding the right person."
When he was asked about the priorities besides finding a head coach, Khan said, "I think we have to look at the business aspect of this organization and get it where it is functioning. Not have any chimneys, but pretty much a flat well-run organization that is going to connect with the community. The tickets are absolutely vital. Not only for money. I think it's money secondary. The most important thing is to get the 12th person in the stands. To have the energy in the stadium where they're going to help our players win. That's probably the most important thing."
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