The best thing about the Scouting Combine? No, not the fat dudes in underwear. It’s the ongoing stream of quotes that flood the GLS e-mail inbox and Twitter feed. A parade of owners, general managers and head coaches meet with the media throughout the week, and it’s often the first time we’ve heard from these peeps since January.
So you knew the Jerry Jones media session would be interesting.
The Cowboys owner had to be embarrassed by what went down when North Texas and the new Cowboys Stadium hosted the Super Bowl less than a month ago. Hundreds of fans weren’t able to watch the game from their seats because Jones and the league got greedy and essentially oversold the game. And that was the cherry on top of a week that included injuries due to falling ice from the roof of said stadium, horrible public transportation and the city’s pathetic response to what amounted to a dusting of snow and ice.
It was a disaster. And Jones was asked about it today, with hindsight in play:
“I do, along with the NFL, take responsibility for the seating issue and some of the things that we would like to improve on regarding the seating issues, the informing of the fans that were involved, the NFL and I take responsibility for,” Jones said. “You always like to look at areas you can do better, get better. We certainly intend to and will get much better in terms of the seating and how that is handled. I don’t have a lot of details for you relative to specifics there, as to specifically what we would like to improve on. That’s part of the process of the work ahead – to do it better.”
But Jones doesn’t think seat-gate and the surrounding issues will affect his chances of bringing another Super Bowl to the area.
“I think our opportunity for a Super Bowl in the future are very outstanding, very good,” Jones said, “because of the venue we have and because of the way the Super Bowl was supported and if you will, worked.”
If that worked, can I get an example of a Super Bowl not working? How exactly did that work, Jerry? Because the game was sold out? Because one team won and another lost? Because no one died?
Calvin Watkins of ESPNDallas.com tweeted the following, which is paraphrased and not quoted:
I emphasized that the above tweet from Watkins was paraphrased because I can’t find another place in which Jones is quoted using the word “majority.” But that’s the most important word. If Jones thinks that a good Super Bowl is one in which “the majority” of fans have a “positive experience,” he’s selling the purpose of the game and the experience short (which would make self-serving sense in this case).
A Super Bowl done right means pretty much every single person has the experience of a lifetime — a memory that will last forever, regardless of who wins or who loses. Because it’s the Super Bowl. That’s how it should be.
A Super Bowl host committee can’t consider its event a success simply because more than 50 percent of those who attended the game and the Super Bowl week activities would identify their experience as “positive.” For the price it costs fans to take part in the Super Bowl experience, it had better be breathtakingly fantastic.
I hope Dallas never gets the Super Bowl back. Am I making it personal because my experience in North Texas was far from “positive”? Maybe a little. But I’ve talked to hundreds of people who attended the game and participated in the events that preceded it, and the disappointment level is/was startling.
The city wasn’t prepared, despite the fact that poor weather at the previous year’s NBA All-Star Game should have acted as an educational omen.
The Super Bowl belongs in warm, sunny, fun places with the infrastructure to handle Murphy’s Law-type scenarios. Miami, Tampa, San Diego, Phoenix. Dallas had its chance. It failed. It’s out.