183 posts categorized "Super Bowl XLV"


Outgoing Super Bowl Host Committee head suffering health problems

Bill Lively, head of the North Texas Super Bowl Host Committee, is stepping down from his new job heading the Dallas Symphony Orchestra because of health concerns, The Dallas Morning News is reporting.

Arlington Super Bowl event 3 Lively, 67, who is wrapping up his final responsibilities with the Host Committee, told classical music writer Scott Cantrell that he has been experiencing headaches, chest pains and weight loss. He said doctors have found nothing wrong but told him to take it easier.




Displaced Super Bowl fans get more time to decide on lawsuit

Fans whose seats weren't ready on Super Bowl Sunday at Cowboys Stadium will get more time to decide whether to accept a settlement from the National Football League or join a class-action lawsuit, a federal judge in Dallas has ruled, according to USA Today.

Los Angeles-based attorney Michael J. Avenatti has filed a $5 million suit against the league, the Cowboys and owner Jerry Jones. About 1,200 fans lost their seats when a month-long temporary seating project overseen by the Cowboys wasn't completed by game time.

Here's a copy of the complaint filed in U.S. District Court in Dallas.



Jerry Jones defends Super Bowl vision, takes responsibility for problems

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones spoke in public Friday for the first time since the seating debacle at Cowboys Stadium on Super Bowl Sunday.

Speaking from the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, Jones said his goal was to have the greatest Super Bowl ever and that many things went right on Feb. 6.

But he said he was disappointed and regrets the seating problems, which forced about 1,200 fans to be moved at the last minute because their seats weren't ready.

He declined to go into detail about what happened because of ongoing evaluations.

He said his lofty "vision" for the biggest Super Bowl ever was not the problem because the stadium was built to handle the 1,300 or so temporary seats. The problem was more operational. He refused to go into specifics.

He said he takes full responsibility along with the NFL and said he understands why he is being criticized personally as the face of Cowboys Stadium.

He said his disappointment motivates him to get it right next time.

Jones again cited the unusual weather -- ice, snow and temperatures that stayed below freezing for days -- as the biggest problem and said the NFL and its owners recognize that and will consider as much in relation to future Super Bowls in North Texas.

He said the opportunity for future games in North Texas is very good.

As far as football is concerned, Jones said quarterback is a strength for the Cowboys, with Tony Romo in place, but he said the team will evaluate Auburn's Cam Newton and that he should not be dismissed as an option with the ninth pick.

A quarterback is a future consideration. Obviously, he said, the Cowboys will be looking hard at the need positions of cornerback, defensive line and offensive line with the ninth pick as well.

-- Clarence E. Hill Jr.


NFL's failure to communicate on game day might be biggest sin of all

The national uproar over the seating problems at Cowboys Stadium on Super Bowl Sunday sort of overshadowed what was actually a bigger issue: A very long wait for the 103,000-plus trying to enter the stadium.

Many people -- including VIPs such as Host Committee president Bill Lively -- endured what could only be described as a nightmarish wait to get inside the security perimeter on game day. Fans described two-hour waits without toilets, food, water -- or explanation.

NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy told Sports Business Journal  that the waits were a result of a delay in opening the stadium gates while workers were trying to finish the ill-fated seats. 

It's hard not to use the word "debacle" in this case. Seats weren't finished, even though the NFL and the Cowboys had years of advance notice that they would be needed. Gates didn't open when they were supposed to open. Ice that had collected on the roof days before remained up there on game day. 

And maybe the worst sin of all: The NFL elected not to tell anyone.

In the end, that's the one thing that's hard to get past. The world's media was focused on Arlington, Texas, on game day. Yet, in this age of instant communication, the league decided not to use that media attention to inform people headed for the stadium that entrances were closed, seats weren't finished and security lines were long.

Tens of thousands of fans did what they had been urged to do -- arrived early, expecting the security entrances and outdoor fan plazas to open at noon and the stadium doors to open at 1 p.m. 

The NFL said nothing, leaving Arlington police and security officials to deal with angry, rowdy fans who were, to put it simply, kept in the dark from start to finish.

Later, when it was all over, McCarthy would only say, We thought we'd finish the seats on time.

Although the black eye might be the NFL's, North Texas got punched in the face, too, and a consensus seems to be forming that landing Super Bowl L (that's 50) in five years is now a pipe dream.

But, hey, the TV broadcast went off right on time. Priorities?

-- Kathy Vetter, editor


Fort Worth mayor: 'Dallas came to Fort Worth to party'

The Fort Worth City Council used part of the pre-council meeting Tuesday to take stock of Super Bowl week. With ESPN as an anchor in Sundance Square, officials hoped to show off Fort Worth on a world stage. Mayor Mike Moncrief believes that happened despite the bad weather.

And once the skies cleared and the temperature rose, Sundance Square started making money for businesses and tax collectors alike.

"I think you all would agree when that weather changed, Dallas came to Fort Worth to party," Moncrief said. "I don't think any of us have seen that many people in our city core before."

Moncrief and his council colleagues were also pleased not to be the Dallas Cowboys and the NFL, both of whom have been the subject of criticism for temporary seating that wasn't ready on game day.

"There were some things we couldn't control, like the seating issue," Moncrief said. "We can't do something we know nothing about. But it's not Fort Worth that's in the headlines now."

-- John Henry



New NFL slogan: 'Let them eat cake'?

Sally Jenkins of The Washington Post has a very interesting, and sobering, take on JerryWorld and the problems and the NFL's, well, greed.

And she's from Fort Worth, daughter of a very famous Fort Worth father, so she has a dog in this fight, if you ask me.

A tipping point was reached with this Super Bowl, for me. It was the screwed-over anger of those 1,250 people without seats that did it. Those travel-weary, cash-whipped fans paid small fortunes to go to the game, only to discover their stubs were no good, because fire marshals declared some sections unsafe. All of a sudden the whole thing seemed offensive. It was just too much.

-- Kathy Vetter, editor


Jerry Jones expresses regret about seating problem

Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones issued a statement late Monday afternoon expressing regret and taking at least some responsibility for the seating debacle at the Super Bowl.

Here is the full statement:

"Cowboys Stadium was designed with the versatility to be fully capable accommodating the number of seats that were scheduled to be in place for Super Bowl XLV. The stadium configuration was part of the Host Committee bid that was approved by the NFL owners in 2007. The NFL, the Host Committee, the Cowboys, and the City of Arlington worked closely to ensure as safe and as enjoyable experience for as many fans as possible.

"The incomplete installation of temporary seats left a limited number of sections unusable for yesterday's game. Manpower and timing issues caused inconveniences to some fans. At the end of the preparations, approximately 400 fans attending the game were not able to watch from those installed seats. We deeply regret their Super Bowl experience was impacted by this error, and we share that responsibility with the NFL.

"We will also continue to work closely with the NFL in its complete review of Super Bowl XLV.

"At the end of the day, the game on the field, and the stadium where it was played, exceeded the high level of expectation that the Super Bowl presents. It was a great game in a great venue, and it was an experience that will begin the process of bringing future Super Bowls to North Texas.

"Our region displayed the type of tremendous commitment of resources, services, enthusiasm, and hospitality that validates our community as a most worthy home to this wonderful event in the years to come.

"Our collective goals all along were to ensure that more than 103,000 people would be able to have an enjoyable game day experience on Super Bowl Sunday while also being a part of an event that ultimately produced the largest television audience for any program ever.

"We are very proud of the collective efforts of all of the North Texas communities that worked tirelessly to present this event in a very successful manner. It was an effort that also involved overcoming some challenges presented by Mother Nature that had an effect on not only our region, but millions of people all over the country. In addition, we cannot say enough about the level of help and cooperation the City of Arlington provided us during our Super Bowl planning and game presentation."

-Andrea Ahles

Commissioner apologizes for seat issue

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell apologized Monday for the seating problems at Cowboys Stadium on Sunday, but did not provide further details or an explanation of how it happened that thousands of seats weren't ready when the doors were supposed to open for Super Bowl XLV.  Empty-seats

Here are his remarks:

"Any time you put on an event of this magnitude, you have your challenges.

We’ve had them this week. We had an issue this week with several seats for our fans.

It’s something that we have been taking very seriously, working at it. We apologize to those fans that were impacted.

We are going to work with them and we are going to do better in the future.

We will certainly do a thorough review and get to the bottom of why it all occurred, but we take full responsibility for that as putting on this game. But the one thing we will never do is compromise safety – safety for our fans, safety for our players, anyone involved with our event.

I want to thank in context of that, the Arlington Fire Department and the Arlington Police Department. They, and other officials in this area, have done an outstanding job and we are grateful to them for their hard work and helping us as we addressed many of the challenges this week."


For the Super Bowl, even standing outside the stadium worth it to die-hard fans

IMG_1080  5:25 p.m.: Hundreds of football fans stood in solemn silence as Christina Aguilera’s voice boomed throughout a Game Day Plaza set up just outside the stadium. Just about everyone there had paid at least $200 to be near the big game but not inside it. As a gust of wind blew through, people pulled jackets and blankets tighter around them. They all knew the temperature was going to keep dropping.

If there were any regrets among the fans for paying to watch the game in a makeshift plaza on a cold night instead of in the comfort of their own homes, they fell away when Aguilera reached the last line of The Star-Spangled Banner. Fighter jets flew over the stadium and subsequently over the plaza attendees.

Everyone in the plaza cheered at the sight of the jets. Maybe they couldn’t make more noise than the multitude of people inside the closed-roof stadium but that wasn’t going to stop them from trying.

Hermano Cardenas came all the way from Saltillo, Mexico, to stand outside the Cowboys Stadium and watch the game on large flat high-definition screens. He said he’s never lived in Pennsylvania or had any real connection to Pittsburgh.

Members of his family have backed the Steelers for years. That’s why he did.

He’s made trips to Pittsburgh in the past to see games in person and making the trip to Arlington, even if it was just to be outside of the stadium where the game was taking place, seemed like a great opportunity.

“It’s a family thing. They’re our team,” Cardenas said.

IMG_1079 Sisters Linda and Mary Hartwig came to the plaza from Milwaukee with two other friends to support their Packers. The foursome were munching on nachos as they watched the screen for the next play to start.

“We wanted to come and experience it even if we couldn’t be inside, just to be in the atmosphere of this beautiful stadium,” Linda Hartwig said.

There was no question in their minds that coming to watch the game in the plaza was worth the long trip.

“We go to all the games back home and we couldn’t imagine not being here for this,” said Kari Ziegler, also of Milwaukee.

-Aman Batheja

Are these some of the halftime show dancers?

We came across these ladies at 5:15 p.m. They said they were half-time show dancers. We'll find out soon if they were just messing with us.

-Aman Batheja