Then and Now

The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of RCN or any other agency, organization, employer or company.

It is Super Bowl week!  The 54th championship game has the Kansas City Chiefs taking on the San Francisco 49ers.  The game promises to be very entertaining with two exciting, yet contrasting, offenses – one, where the pass is the focal point; the other relies heavily on the running game.  All week, you will read about the match-ups on the offensive side versus the defensive side of the ball.  Special teams will be compared and pundits will dissect the two teams to the best of their abilities.

But, this week, I came across an article by ESPN staff writer Ben Baby, where he compares the first game played on January 15, 1967, (known as the AFL-NFL World Championship Game back then) to this Sunday’s game.  His research was quite interesting.

Let’s start with ticket prices. Tickets for the ‘67 game were $6, $10, and $12.  In today’s dollars the cost would have been $93.73.  Parking for this week’s game costs more than that – an estimated $120 per vehicle.  The last he looked at ticket prices for this year’s game, the cheapest seats at the top of the stadium went for $4,750.  Club seats were selling for $31,200 on Ticketmaster.

Another startling comparison was made with linemen.  The very best back then weighed around 250 pounds.  The average size of an NFL lineman today is 313 pounds!  At the end of last year, there were 372 players listed at 300 or more pounds (352 pounds being the largest).  Every 49ers offensive lineman weighs over 300 pounds while no 1966 Green Bay Packer weighed more than 249 pounds.

Quarterback comparisons are even more shocking.  The numbers back then for yards per game, completion percentage, and passes thrown per game would be dead last in today’s game.

The first game cost CBS and NBC $1 million.  A 30-second ad today costs $5.6 million.  The Grambling State University band performed the halftime show, a far cry from J-Lo and Shakira.  The winners of game one received $15,000 and the losers got $7,500.  After this Sunday, the winners will each receive $124,000 and the losers will get $62,000.

There are no statistics on how much money was bet for game one, but billions of dollars are bet today, over one billion in Nevada alone.  Some estimate that Nevada represents only about 5% of the total amount bet on the game.  And it is believed, the “house” has suffered losses only twice in the 18 years since legal betting on the game has occurred.

I actually have watched every Super Bowl game since year one.  Trust me when I say, my weight, my income, and my energy have dramatically changed as well.

ABOVE THE EARS (SOME MUSINGS) 

  1. Kobe Bryant transcended the world of sports with his career and life. He was the greatest of his time, but that is little consolation today.  Eight families had their lives dramatically changed in a split second on Sunday morning.  Remember them all in your thoughts.  May they all “rest in peace.”
  1. As you know, Kobe Bryant played his high school basketball just outside of Philadelphia at Lower Merion High School. If my memory serves me right, we televised one of his high school games when his team played Whitehall in the state playoffs.  Regretfully, I did another game that day and left the broadcast to another team of announcers.
  1. The Chiefs are a one-point underdog in the Super Bowl. The over/under for points scored is 54.5.  The largest bet placed on the game right now is $684,000 on the 49ers +2 in New Jersey.  I’m sure that number will be surpassed as the week progresses.  With that said, so far, in Nevada, twice as much money has been bet on the Chiefs.
  1. Is there a more inconsistent team in the NBA than the 76ers? I know, I asked this same question last week.  They won five of six in the past week and beat the Lakers on Saturday by 17 points.  Ben Simmons looks like an All-League player and rookie Matisse Thybulle plays great defense.  Soon I may be able to drop the “in” in “inconsistent”.
  1. It is hard to believe that there is only a week and a half left in the regular season for high school basketball. RCN-TV will bring you Central at Whitehall basketball on Tuesday, and this Friday night, Whitehall at Parkland will be followed by Freedom at Liberty.  Our Lafayette schedule includes the Lafayette women taking on Colgate on Wednesday night at 7:00pm and the Lafayette men playing American on Saturday at 2:00pm.  The District XI wrestling championship will be held on Saturday. RCN will have the wrestling LIVE.

GARY’S GUESSES (LAST WEEK – 2-0)  (YEAR-TO-DATE) – 174-90-1  (66%)

SUPER BOWL WINNER

KANSAS CITY

 

Gary Laubach About Gary Laubach

Gary began his broadcasting career with Twin County in 1972. Twin County eventually became C-TEC and then RCN. Gary holds the dual role of Director of Media Services and Sports Director/Broadcaster. He currently broadcasts about 140 sports and entertainment broadcasts a year, and oversees the scheduling of all sporting events for RCN.

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