The NFL’s 32 owners decide on a site location for Super Bowl 52 today. Three finalists–New Orleans, Indianapolis, and Minneapolis–compete to hold the big game in 2018.
Indianapolis is a nice place to live but would you want to visit there? Who doesn’t want to hop on a plane to experience Minneapolis in early February? What could possibly go wrong broadcasting a global event from a stadium relying on a third-world power grid?
Nap Town, the Twin Cities, and the Big Easy surely have their charms. But the lackluster nightlife a few blocks in any direction from Monument Circle, the polar vortex bearing down on one of the coldest states in the lower 48, and a colossal technical Super Bowl mishap in the Super Dome fresh in the minds of fans make each of these destinations less than ideal.
Indianapolis and Minneapolis have each hosted a Super Bowl. New Orleans has hosted ten. So, fairness may favor the northern cities, tradition, and the desires of fans, favor the southern city, which, given Miami’s refusal to pour hundreds of billions of taxdollars into the NFL’s stadium infrastructure, looks to surpass South Florida as the site of the most Super Bowls. And payback for pouring hundreds of millions of taxdollars into new venues, as Minnesota has done for the Vikings’ new complex, rather than a reward for fans for spending thousands on tickets, plays as the guiding rationale for NFL owners in selecting a Super Bowl site.
Glendale, Arizona’s University of Phoenix Stadium, Santa Clara’s Levi Stadium, and Houston’s NRG Stadium host the next three Super Bowls. At least ticket holders won’t have to pack their Eskimo coat.
Fans want to party on Super Bowl weekend in Ybor City, South Beach, and the Gaslamp Quarter–not in their cramped room at the St. Paul Day’s Inn because it’s -22 and they forgot to plug in their rental car the night before. What about Tampa? San Diego? Miami? Pasadena? They make too much sense. The NFL isn’t called the No Fun League for nothing.