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Super Bowl Questions You May Never Have Thought to Ask

Updated on January 14, 2014

Super Bowl Sunday

Super Bowl Questions You May Never Have Thought About…

Super Bowl Sunday is the unofficial national holiday in the United States when millions of people tune into their televisions to watch the most popular sporting event in the country. The Super Bowl is watched by football fans and by people who want to see the most talked about ads on tv. Super Bowl parties make this day the second most popular eating day in the U.S., beat out only by Thanksgiving. So whether you watch the game to see who will be the National Football League champion, or whether you watch the game for the ads, or because the party is a great way to be social, here are some answers to questions about the Super Bowl that you may never have thought about asking.

The Super Bowl is Counted in Roman Numerals

The first Super Bowl denoted by Roman numerals was actually Super Bowl V.
The first Super Bowl denoted by Roman numerals was actually Super Bowl V. | Source

Why is the Super Bowl counted in Roman numerals?

  • Why is the Super Bowl counted in Roman numerals?

The reason Super Bowls are counted in Roman numerals is because the Super Bowl runs into two calendar years. The football season starts in September of one year and the big game concludes the season in February of the next year. Football is the only major American sports that uses Roman numerals to denote games. According to the NFL, there is no desire to change this tradition, which was started with Super Bowl V. It was 1971 Lamar Hunt, who was also an integral part of starting the championship game in 1967, and the person who coined the name Super Bowl, who thought it was a good idea to use Roman numerals. He even renamed Super Bowls 1- 4, with Roman numerals years after they were played, making the idea of Roman numerals part of the allure and culture that encompasses the Super Bowl.

The Super Bowl and Business Expenses

It is common for corporations to take sporting event tickets off as a business expense.
It is common for corporations to take sporting event tickets off as a business expense. | Source

If I buy tickets to the Super Bowl can I write it off as a business expense?

  • If I buy tickets to the Super Bowl can I write it off as a business expense?

Approximately 35% of people who go to the Super Bowl do write it off as a company expense.Ordinarily, 80% of the Super Bowl tickets purchased are bought by corporate sponsors of the NFL, and of the Super Bowl. This also makes it difficult to get your hands on tickets for the big game.

Would the Super Bowl ever be moved to a Saturday?

  • Would the Super Bowl ever be moved to a Saturday?

Most unlikely, the amount of tourism dollars that the game brings into the host city, makes more money for them being held on a Sunday, instead of a Saturday. The average number of days people stay in the host city for the Super Bowl is 3.3 days. The majority of people show up on Friday before the game. If the Super Bowl is moved to Saturday, people would still probably show up on Friday, but leave a day earlier. People pay for four days. It is very likely that people will stay a shorter time if the Super Bowl is moved to a Saturday, and the revenue lost could be substantial.


Do You Think Super Bowl Monday Should Be a Holiday

Do You Think the Monday after the Super Bowl Should Be a Day Off?

See results

Could the day after the Super Bowl ever become a national holiday?

  • Could the day after the Super Bowl ever become a national holiday?

There are many petitions floating around to make Super Bowl Monday a day off from work. The reasons are sound. In a study conducted by the Workforce Institute at Kronos, Inc. in Massachusetts, it was found that many people are likely to call in a sick the day after the Super Bowl, show up late to work, or be unproductive this day, if they do show up at work. Approximately 10% of workers thought ahead and take the day off as a vacation day. In 2012, one and a half million Americans called in sick to work on Super Bowl Monday. Approximately 4.4 million people showed up late to work. When you calculate the number of people who show up with hangovers, spend work time talking about the commercials and the game, and settle up their bets, there is very little work going on the day after the Super Bowl. Smart Money Magazine estimates that approximately $ one billion is lost in business productivity in the two week period before and after the Super Bowl. Of this amount $170 million productivity loss occurs on the Monday after the big game. Although these estimates may compare ideal working productivity the other days, and some of the discussions happen during breaks, before work, after work, and lunchtime, there still is tremendous productivity lost on Super Bowl Monday. Yet, is this reason enough to make it a national holiday? What do you think?


The Cost of Super Bowl Tickets

Super Bowl tickets are in great demand.
Super Bowl tickets are in great demand. | Source

What does the average Super Bowl ticket sell for?

  • What does the average Super Bowl ticket sell for?

Prices drop for tickets as it gets closer to the Super Bowl. The demand for tickets goes down if the teams playing live further away from the city that is hosting the Super Bowl.

  • Arizona Cardinals vs. Pittsburgh Steelers (2009): $2,097.22

  • Indianapolis Colts vs. New Orleans Saints (2010): $2,329.36

  • Green Bay Packers vs. Pittsburgh Steelers (2011): $3,649.91

  • New York Giants vs. New England Patriots (2012): $2,955.56

  • San Francisco 49ers vs. Baltimore Ravens (2013): $2,795.08

For Super Bowl XLVIII in 2014, the NFL announced in Sept 2013 that the highest priced ticket for the big game at MetLife Stadium in New Jersey on Feb 2, 2014, will be $2,600. That is the face value of the ticket. What it ends up selling for in the secondary market will be driven by demand. MetLife Stadium has a capacity seating of 82,500. About 5,000 seats will be eliminated to make room for the cameras, for the media, and for security.The most expensive tickets offer access to an indoor restaurant. This price is more than double the cost of similar tickets from the 2012 game. An NFL spokesman, Brian McCarthy believes that the game being played in New Jersey will create great demand and drive the price up to unprecedented levels. The NFL is looking to close the gap between what the face value of the ticket is, compared to what the street value would be. According to the Wall Street Journal, The next price tier will sell for $1,500. 2012 tickets sold for $950. Approximately 40% of the general admission tickets will be sold for under $1,000. The lowest priced tickets sold for $500. One thousand winners were chosen out of a lottery of 30,000 people. In order to stop the resale of these tickets, the NFL is requiring these ticket holders to pick up their tickets at the gate on the day of the game as they enter the stadium, and will not be permitted to return to the parking lot.



Why is the Super Bowl called the Super Bowl?

  • Why is the Super Bowl called the Super Bowl?

The first Super Bowl was held on January 15, 1967. In the latter part of the 1950’s Lamar Hunt, an entrepreneur from Arkansas wanted to start a football team in Dallas, but was denied by the National Football League. This motivated him to start his own football league, which became known as The American Football League. Eventually he started and owned the Kansas City Chiefs. His American Football League became so successful, the National Football League proposed a merger. The idea was to transition the two leagues into several season ending championship games mirroring the World Series so that the best teams would face off. While everyone involved tried to come up with a catchy name, no one could think of something. Officially the first championship was called the AFL-NFL World Championship Game. The organizers called it the final game, the championship game, and other titles that never quite became popular. Lamar Hunt spontaneously called it the Super Bowl after his children’s favorite toy, the Wham-O popular 1965 bouncy ball called the Super Ball. College Football championships were already called world bowls. The media picked up on the name Super Bowl. Fans liked the name, but Pete Rozelle, the commissioner of the NFL was not fond of the name including the word super. They attempted to have a contest to rename the big game in 1969, but no other name including the Ultimate Bowl or Premier Bowl offered the same appeal.


Is there a difference between the footballs used for the Super Bowl compared to all the other football games throughout the year?

  • Is there a difference between the footballs used for the Super Bowl compared to all the other football games throughout the year?

There are differences. To read more about this click here and read more about the Footballs of the Super Bowl


How did the Super Bowl become such a phenomenon?

How did the Super Bowl become such a phenomenon?

Super Bowl Sunday creates a lot of hoopla. It is talked about on the news and by fans weeks before the big game. To learn about how the Super Bowl came to be and how it came to be the cultural phenomenon it is in the United States, click here.


"I'm Going to Disney World!"

How did Disney get involved in the Super Bowl?

  • How did Disney get involved in the Super Bowl?

It was 1987, and the then CEO of Disney, Michael Eisner was out to dinner with his wife, Jane and Dick Rutan, and Jeana Yeager, pilots who flew around the world without stopping or refueling. Jane Eisner asked them what they were going to do now and in a humorous moment, they said they were going to Disneyland. This gave Eisner’s wife the idea of the slogan for the commercial for the Super Bowl.

The first time the Disney advertisement “I’m going to Disneyworld” was filmed was at the end of Super Bowl XXI, in 1987. Phil Simms, the New York Giants Quarterback who was also the MVP of the game in which the Giants won over the Denver Broncos, was paid $75,000 to utter the now famous phrase. The advertisement became so noteworthy, it was aired on all the major networks long after the game was over. Everyone was repeating the phrases, and the commercial became an instant success. Disney calls the ad campaign “What’s Next?”. Sometime after the game, the players make an appearance at either DisneyWorld in Florida, or Disneyland in California. Other sports players appear in similar advertisements but the Super Bowl was the start of the most “I’m going to DisneyWorld” ads.There have been eight ads that have featured winning team players who were not Super Bowl MVP’s. Four players have been in more than one commercial. Joe Montana in 1989 and 1990. Emmitt Smith in 1994 and 1998. John Elway in 1998 and 1999. Tom Brady in 2002 and 2004.The first player appearing in the commercial who was not a quarterback was Ottis Anderson, the NY Giants Quarterback who was MVP of Super Bowl XXV. In Super Bowl XXIX, Disney featured two players from the San Francisco 49ers, Steve Young, the quarterback, and Jerry Rice, the wide receiver. Rice had been the MVP of the previous Super Bowl, but Rice was not chosen that previous year. Disney mostly uses the MVP of the game in their commercial, but there have been a few exceptions,even using coaches in the commercial some years. In 1998, Disney lowered the fee paid from $75,000 to $30,000 for appearing in the commercial. Since 1987, the Super Bowl question has become an annual tradition, except for Super Bowl XXXIX. Disney chose to not participate in that Super Bowl because of the wardrobe malfunction with Janet Jackson and Justin Timberlake that occurred during the prior Super Bowl XXXVIII.

Disney films two commercials, one with the player saying he is going to DisneyWorld, and the other saying he is going to Disneyland to appeal to the viewers depending on which park they are likely to visit.

In order to air the commercial right after the game, the producers are busy compiling footage while the game is going on to be used in the commercial. The person who asks the question is asked by Mark Champion, from Muncie, Indiana. He announces the play by play for the Pistons, and is the former voice of the Michigan State Basketball and Detroit Lions.

The song that is played, “When You Wish Upon a Star”, which comes from the 1940 movie, Pinocchio, has transformed over the years. They have used different renditions, including a version sung by American Idol winner, Kris Allen.

The player and his family are given an all expense paid trip by Disney to fly them by private jet to DisneyWorld or Disneyland. They stay in a luxury suite and participate in many events going on in the Disney park and are the Grand Marshall of the parade.

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