Two years ago, Hall of Famer Bill Parcells nearly served as the interim head coach for the Saints. In 2014, Parcells will be at Saints training camp.
West Virginia coal baron Jim Justice, the billionaire who owns The Greenbrier, is a Parcells doppleganger. And Justice has been known to have some fun with it.
“I’ve been in airports and people walk up and say, ‘Coach Parcells, can I have your autograph?‘” Justice told Tom Corbett of USA Today. “And I say, ‘Oh, sure.’ And I sign, ‘Best wishes, Bill Parcells’ — because it’s the happiest they can be. [Parcells] is a lot better looking guy than I am.”
Justice said he plunked down $30 million of his own money to build a practice facility for the Saints.
“The Saints are paying for their rooms and their meals,” Justice said. “Basically, that’s it. The Saints didn’t put money in this deal.”
It’s a bit surprising the Saints are even doing that, given the potential economic impact on a resort like The Greenbrier, both during camp and after. Other resorts could be tempted to do the same thing in the future, luring an NFL team to town for an old-school camp experience that either saves the team a lot of money, or possibly puts some extra money into the team’s coffers.