I should have suspected this would happen when the NFL awarded the Super Bowl to The Meadowlands in New Jersey for 2014. Now, somebody has stepped up and urged that the NFL designate the 2016 Super Bowl – the 50th anniversary of our gala sports bacchanalia – for Lambeau Field in Green Bay.
I am treading on really thin ice by writing anything snarky about such a fantasy, since I have lived and worked in Wisconsin for the past 17 years or so. If nothing else, the waitresses at my favorite Sunday morning breakfast place – each adorned in a different Packer jersey – might “accidentally” dump my cream of wheat onto my lap. However, I am pretty sure they don’t read my blog.
An outside contributor pitched the idea of the Super Bowl for Lambeau in a op-ed piece on the front of the Opinion Section of this week’s Sunday Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Which means, I think, that it was done with a straight face.
But the fanciful nature of the suggestion leaves me breathless, if for no other reason than it was made in a newspaper home-ported in a city with a domed stadium that might more conceivably be able to host such an event.
If I read the piece correctly, the principal reasons would be two-fold: it would be a cool (literally) way to mark the 50th anniversary of the 1967 NFL Championship Game, more commonly lovingly referred to as “The Ice Bowl.” And the other principal argument why the NFL should award the game to the Frozen Tundra would be because they had established the precedent of sending the 2014 game to New Jersey.
Since the jury is still out on whether that was a particularly adroit stratagem or maybe a world-class goof, I don’t know if basing your argument in that fashion is the best plan.
The writer notes that more than half of the NFL Playoff games since 2002 have been played in temperatures of 50 degrees or colder. This I would regard as a fairly clever pitch, not unlike suggesting that Phyllis Diller and Sophia Loren might be similarly desirable choices for a blind date, since both are women.
The guy, God love him, also tries to dismiss the anticipated concern about Green Bay having an adequate number of hotel rooms by noting that if Milwaukee were included in the discussion, there would be rooms aplenty.
He apparently didn’t think that one all the way through to what might be its logical conclusion: if the Super Bowl were somehow awarded to Green Bay, you might have tens of thousands of fans traveling two hours to watch a game in 10 degree weather with a handsomely domed stadium blinking incessantly in the rear-view mirror where their hotel rooms were located.
As a transplanted New Yorker living reasonably peaceably with the indigenous people of Wisconsin, I know I am opening myself up to some heat for suggesting this op-ed piece is quaint but ultimately silly, but I just don’t think it’s ever going to happen.
But, of course, I was a little surprised by the Meadowlands decision, too.