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Tuesday, January 17, 2006

[Sports] This is important…this means something (Updated)

A brief discussion with Dom this morning got us both thinking about previous Superbowls. Then we noticed some things. These are maybe just small details but they are almost certainly important.

1. Names are important.

Dating back to 1998 the Superbowl has been won four times by a coach named Bill (or whose name contains the word “Bill” and often gets called Bill by mistake), three times by a coach called Mike and once by a coach named John.

Looking at the current play-off contenders, if they make the Superbowl the Steelers (Bill Cowher, top left) have the edge, followed by the Broncos (Mike Shanahan, bottom right) and the Seahawks (Mike Holmgren, top right) and trailing well behind is the Panthers (John Fox, bottom left).

If both Mikes make the final game (which could happen) bet on the Broncos. Why? Two of the three recent Superbowl victories for Mikes were from Mike Shanahan.

However, should either of the Mikes or the Bill meet the John in the final game, you know who to pick.

2. Location

Until Alaska or Hawaii gets a team, the largest distance between two possible teams in a Superbowl would be the Seattle Seahawks vs the Miami Dolphins. Of the current hopefuls the largest distance between teams would be if the Steelers played the Seahawks. The smallest distance would be Steelers vs Panthers.

The largest distance between teams (DBT) in the history of the Superbowl was …(I’m inserting a gap for the more knowledgeable readers to make a guess)…Superbowl XIX (1985) San Francisco vs Miami. The 49ers won 38-16 but the game was played in California (so the 49ers just drove down the road).

In the game with the second largest DBT, Superbowl XXXVII, Tampa travelled to San Diego to play Oakland (who just had to drive down the road) and won 48-21.

The smallest DBT for a Superbowl was Superbowl XXV when the NY Giants beat the Buffalo Bills 20-19. This is also the only Superbowl between two teams from the same state, but they played the game in Florida, so Buffalo had just a little bit further to travel.

3. The NFL is still the (second) greatest league in the world!

The “second” had to be added because of the gem that is Australia’s NRL (I’m bored by the game but love the league).

No matter which of the four hopefuls wins the Superbowl, it will be a different winner to any other this century. The Broncos were the last of the current contenders to win the championship, in 1999 against the Atlanta Falcons.

If we get rid of the Broncos (only for arguments sake) we have to go all the way back to 1980 when Pittsburgh beat the LA Rams in Superbowl XIV!

4. Top tacklers are top tacklers for a reason

Finally, and this has nothing to do with the Superbowl or the play-offs, I just noticed that the four of the top five tacklers came from teams that sucked this season. Only Donnie Edwards from the Chargers was on a good team. You have to get down to Shelton Quarles from Tampa at #8 before you find a player from a play-off team. Though it does say something that last placed Houston’s first tackler shows up at #21.


It occurred to me that there might be another indicator of a team’s possible success in the Superbowl. It was right in front of my face, so to speak.

5. Coaches with moustaches.

<>This may be the highest correlation ever! Just looking at games where a moustachioed coach played one who was clean shaven over the last 6 Superbowls; the bald-faces beat the hairy-men 2-0 and losing by an average of five points. Due to constant coaching changes I won’t go back too far into history but Pittsburgh also lost the big one in 1996 with fur-lipped Bill Cowher at the helm.

If this year’s game is between Pittsburgh and Seattle then we may see the first ever championship winning coach with a ‘tache.

If anyone can remember a moustachioed coach winning the Superbowl please write in.

1 comment:

GM Doug said...

Regards Superbowl indicators follow the rule of QB Fisherman Beards.

When taking the Steelers to the bowl Neil O'donnell started to look as if he was lost at sea 6 days out of 7 and then was lost on the field in the big game.

There's a few others similar who grow a beard during the final weeks and play off push. But I think a check of Superbowl winning QBs demonstrate that a clean shaven (or only slight stubble) QB wins more often if not always.