A National Football League attorney mocked the method used by a United States Football League economist to calculate damages the USFL is asking in its $1.69-billion antitrust suit against the NFL during Thursday's testimony.
NFL attorney Robert Fiske said USFL economist Dr. Nina Cornell's projections could mean that the USFL's New Jersey Generals would be playing to crowds of 232,000 a game by 1992. Cornell had prepared two studies to buttress USFL damage claims.
Cornell had calculated in one study that attendance growth rates from two old American Football League teams located in NFL areas--New York and Oakland--could be used to project attendance rates in 12 USFL cities that also had NFL franchises.
One of Cornell's studies computed $565 million in damages and was based on the old AFL experience before the 1970 merger. The second study showed $301 million in damages and was taken from a CBS study designed to learn if it was feasible to televise USFL games in the fall, and projects three-network coverage.
The trial was recessed until Monday, when Howard Cosell is expected to testify, along with Al Davis, managing general partner of the Raiders.