Story by Brent Kalwei
With the 48th installment of the Super Bowl less than a week away, MVC students and faculty each presented their assessment of the big game.
As most people know by now, a topic of discussion is the cold temperature the game will be played in. In fact, it’s looking as if it will be the coldest Super Bowl of all-time.
Harry Carrell, assistant professor of Mass Communication and Public Relations, lived on the East Coast for part of his life and he likes that New York is hosting the game. Although the game will be a good marketing tool for New York, Carrell said the game should be played in the South or West where the hot temperatures will better suit the game.
For the first time since Super Bowl XLIV (44) in 2010 between the New Orleans Saints and Indianapolis Colts, the game will feature the two teams with the best regular season records in their respective conferences. The Seattle Seahawks and Denver Broncos both come into the game with a 16-3 overall record.
With the game so evenly matched, predicting the game is no easy task. Carrell, along with Ken Kujawa, director of the Viking Sports Network, and Mass Communication students DelMeko Jordan and James O’Sullivan selected a winner.
Both Kujawa and Carrell selected Seattle to win the game despite both rooting for Denver largely because they like quarterback Peyton Manning. “It will be a heck of a game,” Kujawa said. He added Seattle can stop Denver’s offense better than Denver can stop the run game of running back Marshawn Lynch. Carrell said Seattle’s defense is good enough to stop Manning.
Jordan and O’Sullivan, on the other hand, both picked the team they are rooting for. O’Sullivan said he picked Denver to win the title game before the season started and is going to stick with it. He wants to see Manning get a second ring. Jordan said the temperature will favor the team with the better defense, which he thinks is Seattle. He also said the run game of the Seahawks will be key.
There have been many memorable Super Bowls since the first one between the Kansas City Chiefs and Green Bay Packers in 1967. Each student and faculty member recall some of the most memorable games and moments from past Super Bowls.
Carrell has witnessed every single Super Bowl. He remembers the significant victories of the New York Jets and Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowls III and IV. Both teams came from the National Football League’s rival American Football League who was considered inferior during the time.
Although Carrell was a fan of the Minnesota Vikings who lost to Kansas City in Super Bowl IV, he appreciated what the game did for football. The Jets and Chiefs brought parity between both leagues which eventually helped the AFL-NFL merger in 1970.
Seeing Doug Williams, former Washington Redskins quarterback, shine on the big stage was also an extraordinary moment in Carrell’s memory of the Super Bowl. Williams won the MVP of the Super Bowl played in 1988. Carrell said it was nice to see an underdog-type player like him, who wasn’t largely recognized, throw so many touchdown passes in the game.
Kujawa has also seen every Super Bowl played and, growing up in South Dakota, he was also a Vikings fan. Along with all of Minnesota’s big game appearances, he recalled some other games that were memorable. He said watching quarterback Joe Montana lead the San Francisco on a late-game winning drive against the Cincinnati Bengals in Super Bowl XXIII (23) was memorable.
Kujawa said getting to see Walter Payton, Chicago Bears running back, and Denver Broncos quarterback John Elway each finally win a Super Bowl after many years in the league was really special to witness.
O’Sullivan is a St. Louis Rams fan and the time that the Rams won the Super Bowl in 2000 was a big moment for him. He said the tackle to end the game at the one yard line was one of the most exciting finishes.
Although the 2007 New England Patriots didn’t end up winning the Super Bowl, O’Sullivan and Jordan said they are one of the greatest teams of all-time because they went 18-0 prior to losing the big game. O’Sullivan added that the 1999 Rams and this year’s Broncos are in the discussion as the greatest ever. He said one of the main keys to Denver’s success is the outstanding season of Manning with his record-setting 55 touchdown passes and 5,477 passing yards.
Kujawa said the best teams he ever saw were the 1970s Pittsburgh Steelers dynasty who won four Super Bowls over the decade. He said those teams had many weapons on both sides of the ball.
There is a consensus among all of them about what they enjoy as far as festivities outside of the game itself. Everyone mentioned commercials as something they relish. They all like to see what unique ideas the different companies come up with each year.
Carrell and Kujawa like to discuss the best commercials with their class the following day of school.
“How can I not get excited about the commercials?” Carrell said.
As for watching this year’s Super Bowl, Kujawa, Carrell and O’Sullivan all said they plan to watch the game in a less distracting atmosphere. Kujawa and Carrell plan to stay home and watch the game with their wives while O’Sullivan wants to enjoy the game with a few friends.
Jordan, on the other hand, is planning on going to a Super Bowl watch party as he usually does. He said he likes gathering around the television while eating some good food including some good Kansas City barbeque.