Wrigley Field — bowl destination?
That certainly seems to be the case. The Cubs are preparing to host football games in the near future, but their ultimate goal is to have a bowl game every year at Wrigley Field, much like how the Yankees host the Pinstripe Bowl at Yankee Stadium.
"Concerts that may not sell out elsewhere sell out at Wrigley," Cubs president Crane Kenney told the Chicago Tribune. "It's because of the ballpark, Wrigleyville, Chicago, the history. It gives us confidence that a bowl game will succeed here."
The Cubs are already planning to offer up Wrigley Field to Northwestern for the school to host Big Ten matchups, starting in 2020.
By then, work on Wrigley Field's restoration project, along with other construction zones in the area relating to the ballpark, should be complete. It also gives the Cubs enough time to work out deals with conferences, find a title sponsor and obtain a partnership with a broadcast network.
The deals already seem to be in the works. According to Big Ten Network President Mark Silverman, the network "would be open to exploring televising a bowl game in Chicago."
It wouldn't be the first time Wrigley Field has hosted other sporting events. Most recently, Italian soccer club AS Roma played a preseason match there in 2012. Northwestern played Illinois in football at the stadium in 2010, with ESPN's "College GameDay" on-site. The NHL's Winter Classic between the Red Wings and Blackhawks was also at Wrigley in 2009.
And of course, the Bears played at Wrigley from 1921-70.