The Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum is one of those emblems of our city that have drifted aimlessly due to politics and been surrounded by corruption, according to charges filed weeks ago against four former administrators and contractors. Therefore, turning over control of the stadium to the University of Southern California (USC) could be a positive step for the stadium’s future.
Needless to say, under normal circumstances, it would be worrisome to transfer control of taxpayer property into private hands without any more commitments from USC than paying $1 million in annual rent to California and taking over the stadium’s management and security, as has been reported. However, a Los Angeles Times investigation about the work of the Coliseum Commission revealed a high degree of corruption and bribery. As a result, formal charges were filed and one of the accused, contractor Tony Estrada, fled to Brazil.
USC is very interested in the stadium, because it’s home for its football team. The university would also undertake infrastructure renovations and install new technology.
At least USC will be more careful with the Coliseum than the members of the commission, who were appointed by various politicians.
The Coliseum holds an important place in sports history, having hosted Super Bowls and two Olympic Games. It’s also a point of reference for the Latino community because of the soccer matches held there over time.
We hope that this temporary transfer of the Coliseum to USC goes through, and that the university takes good care of the stadium so it can remain open for a variety of events that Angelenos can enjoy.