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Once upon a time the Rochester Rhinos owned the sports entertainment scene. The Rhinos were winning A-League and U.S. Open Cup titles while packing Frontier Field night after night.
The players were viewed as rock stars in the community. Being scene at a Rhinos match was a big deal. However, those days are long gone.
The last time the Rhinos average averaged 10-thousand plus fans per match was in 2006, the last time they played for a title. That was also the year Sahlen Stadium opened.
This week the Rhinos replaced coach Jessie Myers with president and COO Pat Ercoli, the man who guided the franchise to three A-League championships. Due to their success then the Rhinos were considered a candidate to be an expansion team in MLS.
Now there lucky to draw 2-thousand fans. The franchise has hit and all-time low. Attendance and buzz has never been worse.
Is it because of where Sahlen Stadium is located? Perhaps. The overall talent on the team is a step below those great teams of the late 1990's and early 2000's.
I believe even the true Rhinos fan could not name five players on the team. Which begs me to ask where has the Rhino fan gone? Or is the soccer fan overrated in this town.
Even the Western NY Flash with Abby Wambach is not drawing big numbers at the gate.