Follow CBSMIAMI.COM: Facebook | Twitter
MIAMI (CBSMiami) — Miami has a super past, hosting ten Super Bowl games spanning six decades, with some of the most memorable moments in Super Bowl history.
When Super Bowl LIV comes to town in 2020, Miami will make history because the game will be the record 11th Super Bowl to take place here.
The first was in 1968: Super Bowl II at the Orange Bowl. That famed venue hosted five championship games, starring Vince Lombardi, Johnny Unitas and Terry Bradshaw, just to name a few.
Dr. Paul George, Resident Historian at History Miami Museum, describes the best moment at Super Bowl III, fifty years ago.
“That was the Joe Namath Bowl. The Jets came in 18 point underdogs and the Colts seemed like they were beyond defeat, just unsurpassable and he guaranteed a Jet victory. He, in so many ways, made that Super Bowl so much more interesting. “The build up to it and the excitement of the bowl itself that I maintain that set the stage for every Super Bowl afterwards. It really put the Super Bowl in the American psyche.”
WEB EXTRA: DR. PAUL GEORGE ON ORANGE BOWL AND ITS INVOLVEMENT WITH MIAMI SUPER BOWLS
Trivia buffs may know that the Orange Bowl era included the first use of artificial turf, and the aptly named “Blooper Bowl” of 1971. So named because of a record eleven turnovers by Dallas and Baltimore. That was the only time the M.V.P. was a member of the losing team: Cowboys’ linebacker Chuck Howley.
Fast forward to 1989, when Super Bowl XXIII is played at then, modern-era, stadium built by, and named for Joe Robbie.
“Robbie said ‘I’m gonna build my own stadium’,” Dr. George recalls. “He’d had three teams in a row that had been Super Bowl teams and he thought he needed a more befitting venue for these teams.”
The new location, known today as Hard Rock Stadium, has seen epic moments of its own.
Starting in 1989 when Joe Montana and the 49ers beat the Bengals with a touchdown pass to John Taylor with just 34 seconds left in the game, winning the first of back-to-back titles for San Francisco.
Then history is made again in 2007 as Tony Dungy’s Colts beat the Bears, making him the first African-American head coach to win a Super Bowl.
In addition, it is also where the first New Orleans Saints championship win took place at Sun Life stadium in 2010.
Rodney Barreto is Chairman of the Miami Super Bowl Host Committee. He has a lot on his plate with the massive effort and coordination that goes into planning the biggest party in town. However, the job has some incredible perks.
“My favorite moment was having Prince sing Purple Rain in the rain. Definitely is the highlight of my participating in Super Bowl,” Barreto said.
Barreto shares that we wouldn’t be here today if it wasn’t for Steven Ross and his generosity.
As the owner of the stadium and the Dolphins, Ross invested over five-hundred million to allow the Committee to get back into the game of going after Super Bowls.
For Barreto and his team, Super Bowl 54 is already taking shape. Even if you don’t get a ticket to the big game, fans will be able to head to downtown Miami for the Super Bowl Live Village.
“If you are sports fan, even if you are not a sports fan especially, you can come down to Bayfront Park. There’s going to be free concerts, food and beverage and all kinds of activations that are going to allow you to participate in the events,” says Barreto.
Looking forward, when you combine South Florida’s enviable winter weather, and status as a world class destination, Barreto predicts we could potentially see a Super Bowl game here every five years.