North Texas welcomes Super Bowl
Published: Monday, February 7, 2011
Updated: Tuesday, November 20, 2012 17:11
Dallas has been prepping for it for over a year. Expectations for a major boost in the local economy ran high. Finally, the countdown was over.
Athletes, celebrities and football fans alike flocked to North Dallas to experience Super Bowl XLV.
Change of plans
Since the announcement of the location for Super Bowl XLV, talks of economic advantages have been abundant. Hotels, restaurants, party venues and rental car companies were all expected to bring in impressive revenues.
Dallas's recent weather, however, efficiently stunted that expected growth. Two resorts closed because of the ice and snow, missing out on their anticipated earnings of nearly $60,000, according to The Dallas Morning News.
Visitors who expected to spend money on activities such as golf quickly realized they needed to change their agendas.
Direct spending was expected to exceed $200 million, according to PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, a record for a Super Bowl host city.
However, after the ice storm, many stores closed their doors earlier, lowering their chances of a sales increase.
SMU students like Charlie McCaslin, a junior history major, are disappointed with North Texas' missed economic opportunity, but still find the presence of the game to be of benefit to the area's reputation.
"It's sad to see some of the positive economic effects eradicated by the weather," he said. "That being said, it is a tremendous benefit to the city."
Ties to the big game
While SMU stood covered in ice only miles from the game, its connections were strong to the face-off between the Green Bay Packers and the Pittsburgh Steelers.
One particular alumnus played a significant role in this weekend's game—Bill Lively ('65) is the president and CEO of the North Texas Super Bowl XLV Committee, which was responsible for bringing the game to Arlington.
SMU's presence was also on the field. For the second year in a row, SMU has an alumnus earning a Super Bowl ring. Steelers' wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders (‘09) graduated from SMU in 2009, after helping the Mustangs win the Sheraton Hawaii bowl.
Last year, Thomas Morstead, punter for the New Orleans Saints and SMU grad, played in the Super Bowl.
Another SMU alumnus was on an executive side of the game. Ted Thompson ('75) serves as the executive vice president and general manager of the Green Bay Packers. Thompson also played for the Houston Oilers from 1975 to 1984.
SMU was also the planned location for the Packers' practices, but the persistent winter weather kept them off our field.
Amanda Weise, drum major for the Mustang Band, was more than excited for North Texas to host the Super Bowl.
"I would have to say that the general atmosphere of a Super Bowl city per-say is pretty electrifying," she said, commenting on all of the team paraphernalia she witnessed last week.
Weise, from Houston, also saw the Super Bowl as a chance to share Dallas with a greater number of visitors.
"I love that it is Dallas, too, because then everyone gets to see the culture of the city itself, even if it isn't a large amount," she said.