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Continued: May 25, 1989: Super Bowl XXVI: 'Nobody gave us a snowball's chance'

  • Article by: ROBERT SANSEVERE , Star Tribune
  • Last update: May 25, 1989 - 12:26 PM

Finks told the owners that Minnesota has made positive contributions to the NFL since joining in 1961 and noted the Vikings were the first expansion team to play in the Super Bowl.

Finks' onetime boss, former Vikings owner Max Winter, was part of the videotape presentation. The camera started with a tight shot of Winter, who said it always has been his dream to have a Super Bowl in Minnesota. The camera pulled back to show Winter sitting alone in the Metrodome. He told owners that he wasn't planning to leave until the Super Bowl came to Minnesota, and, gesturing to an empty seat, he said, "I'll save a seat for you."

Sen. Rudy Boschwitz, along with Perpich and task force chairwoman Marilyn Nelson, spoke to the owners. Boschwitz said that before becoming a senator he had built Plywood Minnesota with three elements - quality, value and service. He promised the NFL that the same elements would go into staging the Super Bowl.

Minnesota made the first presentation, followed by Detroit, Seattle and Indianapolis. Lynn, who spoke with all 27 owners in the days leading to the vote, then led a floor debate by reminding the owners that it was he who had lobbied in 1985 to put the Super Bowl in a northern-tier city.

Lynn fought at the 1985 spring owners meeting to bring the Super Bowl north after Minnesota had failed in four attempts to gain the game. Minnesota was one of four finalists in 1984 for the 1987 and 1988 Super Bowls, which went to Pasadena's Rose Bowl and San Diego. In March 1985, Minnesota was turned down as a site for the 1989 and 1990 Super Bowls, which went to Miami and New Orleans.

"Five years ago, Mike pushed for the idea to get a northern-tier city. The feeling was that Mike was a moving force. There was a lot of sentiment for him," Bowlen said.

Said Nelson: "Mike did more than anyone will ever know. What he did last time was a miracle. . . . The league didn't want to go north."

Bowlen said that Seattle might have been hurt by having a new owner, Ken Behring, who hasn't yet developed strong ties with other owners, and that Indianapolis might have been hurt by being a relatively new NFL city.

Earlier in the day, at a preliminary meeting with the Super Bowl search committee, it appeared that Minnesota's bid might be weakened after the NFL told task force members it could not accept a bid that included a $1 million guarantee for parking. The figure was knocked down to about $450,000 to cover game-day parking, $200,000 for press facilities and $100,000 for game-day expenses.

Seattle's $1.5 million guarantee to help defray league costs was whittled down by about a million. Neither Detroit nor Indianapolis offered similar financial guarantees.

The NFL viewed the figures as "definitely an enticement," according to NFL director of special events Jim Steeg. "It was an excess amount of money to buy the game," Steeg said. "There was sentiment in the room (the NFL) didn't want to sell the Super Bowl."

Nelson said the $1 million guarantee was to make up for the revenue that Detroit's Silverdome in Pontiac, Mich., could provide over the Metrodome because of its 9,000-seat edge. With temporary seats, the Metrodome can expand capacity to 71,619.

Lynn said the "big news" was that he was prepared to offer NFL owners 7,000 seats allocated for Vikings ticket holders if anyone questioned the difference in seating between Detroit and Minnesota.

"Nobody asked and I didn't have to use it," he said. "If I had to give up all the season-ticket holders' tickets, I wouldn't have been too popular in Minnesota. But if it was the price we had to pay to get the Super Bowl, I would've done it."

Lola Perpich emerged unscathed from her husband's happy horseplay after the announcement. "I've learned to dodge his punches," she said.

"I did it one time at a hockey game," the governor said, "and almost knocked her out."

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St. Louis 2
Pittsburgh 4 FINAL
Atlanta 2
Miami 7 FINAL
Washington 11
Detroit 4 FINAL
Philadelphia 4
Minnesota 6 FINAL
Baltimore 5
NY Yankees 7 FINAL
Houston 0
Tampa Bay 2 FINAL
Boston 3
Baltimore 4 FINAL
Toronto 2
Cincinnati 8 FINAL
LA Angels 6
Chicago Cubs 7 FINAL
Kansas City 0
Los Angeles 9 FINAL
San Francisco 11
Chicago WSox 4 FINAL
Cleveland 1
Milwaukee 0 FINAL
Oakland 7
Seattle 5 FINAL
San Diego 8
Texas 5 FINAL
Los Angeles 10
Colorado 11 FINAL
Arizona 10
Arizona 1 FINAL
Colorado 2
Houston 99 FINAL
Washington 91
LA Lakers 99 FINAL
Brooklyn 107
Minnesota 88 FINAL
New Orleans 110
Philadelphia 86 FINAL
Cleveland 87
Detroit 102 FINAL
Miami 109
LA Clippers 119 FINAL
Boston 106
Dallas 99 FINAL
Indiana 104
Memphis 89 FINAL
San Antonio 103
Oklahoma City 109 FINAL
Phoenix 97
Washington 5 FINAL
NY Rangers 2
Calgary 5 FINAL
Nashville 2
Boston 2 FINAL(OT)
Carolina 1
Detroit 4 FINAL
NY Islanders 5
Florida 4 FINAL
Ottawa 2
Anaheim 2 FINAL
New Jersey 1
Chicago 4 FINAL
Winnipeg 3
San Jose 2 FINAL(SO)
Pittsburgh 3
Michigan State 76 FINAL
Louisville 70
Gonzaga 52 FINAL
Duke 66
Philadelphia 0 FINAL
Chicago 1
Toronto FC 1 FINAL
Real Salt Lake 2
(7) Florida State 74 FINAL
(3) South Carolina 80
Villanova 70 FINAL
West Virginia 75
Michigan 69 FINAL
Southern Miss 60
Temple 69 FINAL
Middle Tennessee 57
Siena 50 FINAL
Louisiana 52
St Marys-CA 66 FINAL
(5) Baylor 68 FINAL
(2) Notre Dame 77
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Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 preseason     
Aug 8 - vs. Oakland 7 pmX10-6
Aug 16 - vs. Arizona 7:30 pmX30-28
Aug 23 - at Kansas City 7 pmX30-12
Aug 28 - at Tennessee 7 pmX19-3
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Sep 7 - at St. Louis NoonX34-6
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Sep 21 - at New Orleans NoonX20-9
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