Meadowlands to prepare for 2009 bid

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- The New York Giants and their
landlord have abandoned their efforts to bring the 2008 Super Bowl
to Giants Stadium and will offer a "far superior" bid for the
2009 NFL championship game.

The announcement by the Giants and the New Jersey Sports and
Exposition Authority came less than four weeks after they reached
an agreement on renovating Giants Stadium, with an eye toward
landing the Super Bowl.

That leaves Arizona, Washington and Tampa as the three
candidates for the 2008, which will be awarded Oct. 30 at a league
meeting in Chicago. The 2009 game is tentatively scheduled to be
awarded in March 2005.

"We believe the renovation plans we have for Giants Stadium
will make it more than Super Bowl-ready by 2009," John K. Mara,
the Giants' executive vice president and chief operating officer,
said in a statement.

He has said he hoped construction would begin after the 2004
season and take two years, but noted Thursday that there is no
"definitive agreement" on when it would be done.

"We are convinced, however, that the bid we will offer for 2009
will be far superior to any bid we could make earlier," Mara said.

A renovation agreement is likely to be signed later this year,
the authority said.

NJSEA president George Zoffinger said that a 2009 bid would
allow more renovations to the stadium.

Zoffinger also said the later date would give the authority more
time for a planned redevelopment of the Meadowlands Sports Complex,
which includes the stadium.