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Remembering the super stadium in New Orleans

By Jon Cohen

Section: Sports

September 23, 2005

The Superdome, home of the New Orleans Saints and last week thousands of refugees, may never open its doors to another sporting event. In this article we want to focus on the Superdomes glory days and the historic sporting events that took place within its walls.

Construction of the Superdome began in 1971 and lasted until 1975. At the time of its completion, the Superdome with its capacity of 72,003 stood as the largest dome structure in the world. The Superdome was the popular choice to host the Super Bowl and NCAA Final Fours because of its large size and climate-controlled environment. In fact the Superdome has hosted more Super Bowls (6) than any other venue.

In what still stands as the largest point differential in Super Bowl history, Joe Montana led his San Francisco 49ers to a 55-10 shellacking over the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl XXIV. This Super Bowl victory capped Montanas hall of fame career as a 49er and augmented the already strong argument that he is the best quarterback of all time. Most recently, in 2002, it hosted the Patriots first ever NFL championship, which propelled Tom Brady into superstardom.

A testament to the versatility of the Superdome is that it was also host to four NCAA Final Fours. Fans of March Madness know that the 1993 Final Four was highlighted by Chris Webbers egregious mistake of calling a time out which Michigan did not have. His error sealed the deal for the UNC Tar Heels as they went on to defeat the Wolverines 77-71. Rising from this blunder to the highest levels of glory in 1982, a young, baby-faced freshman by the name of Michael Jordan sunk the game-winning shot to defeat Patrick Ewings Georgetown Hoyas. The game wining shot would soon become Jordans patented move.

While Super Bowls and Final Fours have the entire world peering down upon them, the Bayou Classic also called the Superdome its home. The Bayou Classic played ever year, hosts Grambling St. against Southern University, both of which are historically black universities. The main event may be the football game however the weekend of the game consists of many other festivities that draw in over 200,000. It is quite profitable for New Orleans as it annually generates over 30 million dollars of revenue.

Due to the devastation of the Hurricane Katrina the Superdome may never witness another game winning field goal or buzzer beating shot. However the Herculean performances that took place in this stadium will always be part of the citys spirit and proud heritage.

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