The seating snafu at Super Bowl, which left 400 spectators without seats, has resulted in a $5 million lawsuit against the NFL, the Dallas Cowboys, and Cowboys owner Jerry Jones.
As reported earlier, over 1,200 people at Sunday's Super Bowl game were affected by uncompleted temporary seating in Cowboys Stadium. Some 800 of those fans were moved to alternate seating areas, and the 400 remaining fans were given the opportunity to sit in a club area behind the Pittsburgh Steelers bench or in a standing-room only section. Furthermore, those 400 fans were refunded three times the face value of their tickets (close to $2,400), given free merchandise, food, and beverages, allowed on the field, and given tickets for any future Super Bowl, as well as vouchers for hotel accomodations and airfare. However, the NFL's headache over this controversy is about to be exacerbated by litigation.
According to The Dallas Observer, two of the 400 affected, Mike Dolabi and Steve Simms, are not satisfied by the NFL's offer and are seeking $5 million in damages. Dolabi claims to be a Founder of the new Cowboy Stadium--meaning he spent at least $100,000 on a personal seat license and believed that guaranteed him not only season tickets to all Cowboys home games, but an advantage in acquiring a favorable seat at the Super Bowl, as well. The complaint reads, most of the 'Founders' fans, including but not limited to Plaintiff Dolabi, arrived at the stadium on Sunday to discover that Jones and the Cowboys had assigned them to seats with obstructed views and temporary metal fold out chairs, which had been installed in an effort to meet Jones' goal of breaking the attendance record. In addition, almost all of these seats lacked any reasonable view of the stadium's prized video board, which Defendant Jones and the Cowboys routinely claim is the one of the most unique and best features of Cowboys Stadium.
It's likely that this suit will not yield such a payout for Dolabi and Simms, but it's yet another black eye on Super Bowl week. It's not outside the realm of possibility that the NFL will carefully look at this lawsuit and the seating problem preceeding it when deciding whether or not Dallas will host another Super Bowl.