Board approves temporary renaming of Broncos stadium

DENVER -- The Broncos will temporarily change the name of their home stadium for the upcoming season, the team announced Wednesday.

The Metropolitan Football Stadium District board agreed to the team's proposal on Wednesday to call it Broncos Stadium at Mile High.

The board manages the stadium on behalf of taxpayers in six metro-area counties.

"While fans will notice some new signage going up around the stadium reflecting this change, we remain completely focused on securing a long-term naming rights partner," Broncos chief commercial officer Mac Freeman said.

"We've had many productive conversations and are confident we’ll identify the right partner, which is critical for ongoing improvements to our stadium. In this interim period, we’ll continue to provide all the necessary resources to ensure our stadium remains a great place for fans and one of the top facilities in all of sports.”

Sports Authority has had its name on the stadium even after going bankrupt in March 2016 and closing all of its stores.

In January, Broncos president and CEO Joe Ellis said the signage will finally come down and crews began the process a week later.

Sports Authority took over naming rights of the stadium in 2011. When it went bankrupt, it tried to sell the naming rights, but no new company came forward to put its logo on the home of the Broncos.

Sports Authority had five years left on its contract that was worth $19.2 million. When it failed to make a $3.6 million payment in August 2016, the former sporting goods retailer was in breach of its contract.

Sports Authority tried to market the contract. Several companies expressed interest, but no cash bid for the contract was received.

In August 2016, the Broncos emerged as the highest bidder to assume the contract for naming rights to the stadium. The U.S. Bankruptcy Court granted the team the naming rights in November 2016.

The Broncos have struggled to find a company to pay millions of dollars to puts its name on the stadium.

The money from naming rights goes to repairs, renovations and upkeep of the stadium, which opened in 2001.

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