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Topic: Chinese Traveler Has Questions about Super Bowl< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2013, 12:38 pm  Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

A young traveler I met when visiting Burma sent me this email today:

"Hi Ben, did you enjoy this national holiday? I don't know the football, but the show and commercials are amazing!! How did super bowl become such a big event!!"

I have near-zero interest in spectator sports of most any kind -- so I am really the last person she should ask.  But already, you can see there is some misconception about Super Bowl being a 'national holiday'.  Sure, I can google the info, but I'd like to give her some 'first hand' replies from 'true football fans' like yourselves!

So, please chime in with how super bowl came to be, how it got this big, and describe what y'all do on super bowl Sunday's -- so we can give her a full picture of this most American of celebrations.   :)


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2013, 12:51 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

No organization in the country has perfected the art of "hype" as well as the NFL.  I think that largely accounts for the Super Bowl's success, if that's what you want to call it.  As for what I do on Super Bowl Sunday, I usually go skiing.  When I get home, if the game is in it's second half and looks interesting, I might watch the rest of it.  But it has to be close otherwise I'll find a bajillion other things to do.  Under those circumstances, it will be the only sports event that I will spend any time watching with the exception of some skiing events during the Winter Olympics.  Lots of hype there as well.

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2013, 12:53 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

It's an excuse to drink, eat lots of food and party. Kinda like every other holiday.
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2013, 12:55 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I don't know. I was busy working in the yard all day.

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2013, 1:16 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

There used to be two US football leagues, the NFL and the AFL. They agreed to merge into one league, and part of that deal was a championship game at the end of the season between the winners of each league. After they merged, it was one league with two "conferences", the NFC and the AFC.

I think one reason the Super Bowl is such a big deal is that, unlike other major US sports championships (baseball, basketball) it is a single, winner-take-all game (other championships play a series). Football also is, I believe, the overall #1 spectator sport in the US in terms of number of fans. No other major professional sport in the US has the same feel of gladiators battling on the field as football does.

The Super Bowl also is played on a weekend, allowing it to become a huge party. People throw big Super Bowl parties and invite their friends to come watch (as opposed to people watching by themselves at home). The city for the Super Bowl is picked way in advance, so the party in the host city is planned years in advance (as opposed to baseball and basketball championship series, which includes games on weekday nights, and are played in the cities of the two teams so cannot be picked and prepared for way ahead of time).

Another thing that has made the Super Bowl so big is the commercials themselves -- advertisers try to create their "best" work for commercials that will debut during the Super Bowl, and it has evolved to the point that some people watch for the commercials and go to the bathroom during the game. This trend of blockbuster commercials in the Super Bowl started with an ad Apple Computer ran during the 1984 Super Bowl that was created to only run that one time ever. It still is one of the most talked-about TV commercials of all time. Before that, advertisers just ran their regular commercials but after that Apple ad everyone wanted to "one-up" each other, and the audience has come to expect to be wowed by the commercials.

Hope that helps.


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2013, 1:32 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(JRinGeorgia @ Feb. 05 2013, 1:16 pm)
QUOTE
I think one reason the Super Bowl is such a big deal is that, unlike other major US sports championships (baseball, basketball) it is a single, winner-take-all game (other championships play a series).

I was also pondering this the other night - why the Super Bowl is so much bigger than the World Series or NBA playoffs and realized it's because it's only 1 game, vs the best of 7 series in baseball and whatever they do for basketball (my least favorite sport to watch)

So, why does it take 4 or more games to crown a baseball champion but only 1 game to crown a football champion?


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2013, 1:37 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Firedancer @ Feb. 05 2013, 10:32 am)
QUOTE

(JRinGeorgia @ Feb. 05 2013, 1:16 pm)
QUOTE
I think one reason the Super Bowl is such a big deal is that, unlike other major US sports championships (baseball, basketball) it is a single, winner-take-all game (other championships play a series).

I was also pondering this the other night - why the Super Bowl is so much bigger than the World Series or NBA playoffs and realized it's because it's only 1 game, vs the best of 7 series in baseball and whatever they do for basketball (my least favorite sport to watch)

So, why does it take 4 or more games to crown a baseball champion but only 1 game to crown a football champion?

In four or more games the incurred brain and ligament damage would leave too few ambulatory team members to actually field a full squad.
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2013, 1:38 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(High_Sierra_Fan @ Feb. 05 2013, 1:37 pm)
QUOTE

(Firedancer @ Feb. 05 2013, 10:32 am)
QUOTE

(JRinGeorgia @ Feb. 05 2013, 1:16 pm)
QUOTE
I think one reason the Super Bowl is such a big deal is that, unlike other major US sports championships (baseball, basketball) it is a single, winner-take-all game (other championships play a series).

I was also pondering this the other night - why the Super Bowl is so much bigger than the World Series or NBA playoffs and realized it's because it's only 1 game, vs the best of 7 series in baseball and whatever they do for basketball (my least favorite sport to watch)

So, why does it take 4 or more games to crown a baseball champion but only 1 game to crown a football champion?

In four or more games the incurred brain and ligament damage would leave too few ambulatory team members to actually field a full squad.

Yet the Stanley Cup goes on!  :D

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2013, 1:43 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(JimInMD @ Feb. 05 2013, 10:38 am)
QUOTE

(High_Sierra_Fan @ Feb. 05 2013, 1:37 pm)
QUOTE

(Firedancer @ Feb. 05 2013, 10:32 am)
QUOTE

(JRinGeorgia @ Feb. 05 2013, 1:16 pm)
QUOTE
I think one reason the Super Bowl is such a big deal is that, unlike other major US sports championships (baseball, basketball) it is a single, winner-take-all game (other championships play a series).

I was also pondering this the other night - why the Super Bowl is so much bigger than the World Series or NBA playoffs and realized it's because it's only 1 game, vs the best of 7 series in baseball and whatever they do for basketball (my least favorite sport to watch)

So, why does it take 4 or more games to crown a baseball champion but only 1 game to crown a football champion?

In four or more games the incurred brain and ligament damage would leave too few ambulatory team members to actually field a full squad.

Yet the Stanley Cup goes on!  :D

And on, and on, and on......
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2013, 1:46 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(High_Sierra_Fan @ Feb. 05 2013, 1:43 pm)
QUOTE

(JimInMD @ Feb. 05 2013, 10:38 am)
QUOTE

(High_Sierra_Fan @ Feb. 05 2013, 1:37 pm)
QUOTE

(Firedancer @ Feb. 05 2013, 10:32 am)
QUOTE

(JRinGeorgia @ Feb. 05 2013, 1:16 pm)
QUOTE
I think one reason the Super Bowl is such a big deal is that, unlike other major US sports championships (baseball, basketball) it is a single, winner-take-all game (other championships play a series).

I was also pondering this the other night - why the Super Bowl is so much bigger than the World Series or NBA playoffs and realized it's because it's only 1 game, vs the best of 7 series in baseball and whatever they do for basketball (my least favorite sport to watch)

So, why does it take 4 or more games to crown a baseball champion but only 1 game to crown a football champion?

In four or more games the incurred brain and ligament damage would leave too few ambulatory team members to actually field a full squad.

Yet the Stanley Cup goes on!  :D

And on, and on, and on......

Not if your a Caps fan it doesn't...  :(

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2013, 1:47 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(JimInMD @ Feb. 05 2013, 10:46 am)
QUOTE

(High_Sierra_Fan @ Feb. 05 2013, 1:43 pm)
QUOTE

(JimInMD @ Feb. 05 2013, 10:38 am)
QUOTE

(High_Sierra_Fan @ Feb. 05 2013, 1:37 pm)
QUOTE

(Firedancer @ Feb. 05 2013, 10:32 am)
QUOTE

(JRinGeorgia @ Feb. 05 2013, 1:16 pm)
QUOTE
I think one reason the Super Bowl is such a big deal is that, unlike other major US sports championships (baseball, basketball) it is a single, winner-take-all game (other championships play a series).

I was also pondering this the other night - why the Super Bowl is so much bigger than the World Series or NBA playoffs and realized it's because it's only 1 game, vs the best of 7 series in baseball and whatever they do for basketball (my least favorite sport to watch)

So, why does it take 4 or more games to crown a baseball champion but only 1 game to crown a football champion?

In four or more games the incurred brain and ligament damage would leave too few ambulatory team members to actually field a full squad.

Yet the Stanley Cup goes on!  :D

And on, and on, and on......

Not if your a Caps fan it doesn't...  :(

#SilverLiningTime
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2013, 1:49 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Firedancer @ Feb. 05 2013, 1:32 pm)
QUOTE
So, why does it take 4 or more games to crown a baseball champion but only 1 game to crown a football champion?

1.  The difference between good and bad is narrower in baseball.  It takes more games to accurately measure who is better, especially when you're measuring across an array of starting pitchers.

2.  Apart from the starting pitchers, the wear and tear in baseball is enough less that taking an accurate measurement through multiple games is actually feasible.
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2013, 2:22 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Ben2World @ Feb. 05 2013, 10:38 am)
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..So, please chime in with how super bowl came to be, how it got this big, and describe what y'all do on super bowl Sunday's -- so we can give her a full picture of this most American of celebrations.   :)

It and the NFL got to where they are due to marketing (it's where Americans can unload some hostility) and (gasp!!) revenue sharing.  While some teams are stronger than others, each can buy enough talent, due to revenue sharing, to pull an underdog victory ("any given Sunday").  ESPN had a special on the business side of the NFL last month, found it interesting.

Superbowl usually a culmination of winter party season.  Whatever booze is left over ...


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2013, 2:28 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

It's a gladiator sport. It's better suited for watching on t.v. than other sports (more action than baseball, easier to follow than hockey, more replays than basketball). They only play once a week so the average guy can keep up with it.

The college football championship would be nearly as big if they had playoffs.
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2013, 2:40 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I would argue that the Superbowl is NOT a big deal.

I went hiking Sunday afternoon and there were plenty of people on the trail.  I missed the first quarter, and yes I did watch the rest of the game, but that was more a social event.  I could have cared less who won the game, and quite frankly, I would have been happier watching a good movie or a nature documentary.....especially if there weren't any commercials.
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2013, 3:09 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(JimInMD @ Feb. 05 2013, 1:38 pm)
QUOTE
Yet the Stanley Cup goes on!  :D
Ice hockey in June! Makes sense to me.  ???



(big_load @ Feb. 05 2013, 1:49 pm)
QUOTE
1.  The difference between good and bad is narrower in baseball.  It takes more games to accurately measure who is better, especially when you're measuring across an array of starting pitchers.

2.  Apart from the starting pitchers, the wear and tear in baseball is enough less that taking an accurate measurement through multiple games is actually feasible.
Agree, and...

3. Baseball and basketball are played such that in any given game one team has home field advantage, so would be "unfair" to play only one game. The Super Bowl is designed such that neither team should have home field advantage (unless the team from the host city happens to get into the Super Bowl).



(Lamebeaver @ Feb. 05 2013, 2:40 pm)
QUOTE
I would argue that the Superbowl is NOT a big deal.

I went hiking Sunday afternoon and there were plenty of people on the trail.
Hmmm, true it's not a big deal to literally everybody, but it is a big deal. If the Super Bowl isn't a big deal then what is?


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(Lamebeaver @ Feb. 05 2013, 2:40 pm)
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but that was more a social event.  

That is a major reason why the "game" is so big, it has become another New Year's Eve style party.

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2013, 5:47 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Yeah the most watched sporting event every year in America definitely is not a big deal....... says people on LSD.   :)

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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2013, 9:21 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Firedancer @ Feb. 05 2013, 1:32 pm)
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So, why does it take 4 or more games to crown a baseball champion but only 1 game to crown a football champion?

Because you can't play 7 football games in two weeks.  Both teams would run out of players.

If the NFL could play more games they would.


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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2013, 11:12 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(no_granola @ Feb. 05 2013, 6:21 pm)
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(Firedancer @ Feb. 05 2013, 1:32 pm)
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So, why does it take 4 or more games to crown a baseball champion but only 1 game to crown a football champion?

Because you can't play 7 football games in two weeks.  Both teams would run out of players.

If the NFL could play more games they would.

Yes the maneuvers to exchange meaningless exhibition games in the preseason for additional season or playoff games in recent talks speaks to the awareness they e pretty much reached the boundary of what their personnel rosters can withstand damage-wise.
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 05 2013, 11:29 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

And yet they came within an eyelash of extending the regular season to 18 games this year.
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(big_load @ Feb. 05 2013, 8:29 pm)
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And yet they came within an eyelash of extending the regular season to 18 games this year.

That's what I was remembering but wasn't that by moving two games from the preseason?

So the effective total would nominally stay the same. Probably failed with the realization that preseason games the starters barely get worked but if those games actually meant something the starters would have to be playing and far more likely to get damaged before the playoffs etc.
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(High_Sierra_Fan @ Feb. 05 2013, 11:35 pm)
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That's what I was remembering but wasn't that by moving two games from the preseason?

That supposedly had the most support of several proposals, and sometime during the negotiations was prematurely reported to have been accepted.
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 06 2013, 1:54 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

You mean it's not a national holiday???!!!

It really is an excuse to party - I know people who have no interest in foodball all season long who watch the Super Bowl - and bet on it, too!

I just look forward to the commercials.  I wonder where the creative ad writers hang out the rest to the year?
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 06 2013, 7:40 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

You must explain the entire Superbowl process and ritual for him to fully understand it.

-We talk about the game for days beforehand and get all set up by running to the stores to buy up all the liquor and nacho chips.
-We wait in wild anticipation and sit in front of the TV's on game day with our friends to hear a bunch of people talk for 5 hours before the event about who's going to win, who's going to lose, who is in prison, who has imaginary girlfriends and who is pissed off because they are not there.
-We then sit and watch a total of an average of 11 minutes of actual action, fake canned performances while hoping to catch sight of a nipple and three hours of commercials that would, on any other day just piss us off to sit through if we were watching anything else.
-We then sit for another four hours after the event listening to people tell us what we just saw like we didn't just spend all day focused on the actual event where we were already told exactly what happened after every play.
-We then rush out into the streets and turn a few cars over and beat up, shoot or stab people wearing different team jerseys

What's not to understand?
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PostIcon Posted on: Feb. 06 2013, 10:39 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(JRinGeorgia @ Feb. 05 2013, 3:09 pm)
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(JimInMD @ Feb. 05 2013, 1:38 pm)
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Yet the Stanley Cup goes on!  :D
Ice hockey in June! Makes sense to me.  ???

You call it 'Ice hockey' so we're not expecting 'sense' from you  :p

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Like others, I was doing far more important things.

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