Instapundit wondered earlier if this was all a stunt to bait the media in classic Rush style. Doesn’t sound like it.

Rush Limbaugh is expected to be dropped from a group bidding to buy the St. Louis Rams, according to three NFL sources.

Dave Checketts, chairman of the NHL’s St. Louis Blues and the point man in the Limbaugh group attempting to buy the Rams, realizes he must remove the controversial conservative radio host from his potential role as a minority member in the group in order to get approval from other NFL owners, the sources said…

Exactly when Limbaugh will be dropped is uncertain, though some familiar with the situation said it could be within the next week. It is unclear if the two sides even have spoken.

Earlier Wednesday, on his syndicated radio show, Limbaugh was defiant, holding on to hope that he still could be part of the ownership group that buys the Rams.

“I’m not even thinking of exiting,” Limbaugh said on his program, according to a transcript provided to ESPN. “I’m not even thinking of caving. I am not a caver. None of us are. We have been betrayed by too many who have caved. Pioneers take the arrows. We are pioneers. It’s a sad thing but our country over 200 years old now needs pioneers all over again, but we do.”

Just yesterday, Goodell called Limbaugh’s old comments on Donovan McNabb “divisive” and unwelcome in the league, which I guess was his hint hint hint to Checketts to start over. From a business standpoint it’s hard to blame him — seeing the league mentioned in news segments about a “plantation” mentality can’t be good for the bottom line — but I guess that’ll depend on whether Rush tries to exact some sort of economic punishment. Anyone expect southern conservatives to boycott football? Me neither.

Update: An interesting point from the comments: If he’s serious about suing for defamation over the false racist quotes attributed to him, he’s now got a claim for damages. Still a tough suit to win but that’s an extra little carrot.

Update: Needless to say, the next vocal liberal who tries to buy a sports franchise is going to have a hell of a time.

Tags: NFL