South Florida’s preliminary bid to host the 2014 Super Bowl was sent in a few days before today’s deadline, South Florida Super Bowl Host Committee Chairman Rodney Barreto told me today.
The region may have hosted a record 10th Super Bowl on Feb. 7, but it has really big and formidable competition this time. The new New York Giants' and Jets' Meadowlands Stadium opening in New Jersey this month is considered the favorite to host the 2014 game, despite the potential for frigid and snowy weather. The owners waived the requirements of an average 50-degree temperature or domed stadium to allow the region to bid. Tampa is also bidding.
“New York is an exciting city, very dynamic, the NFL is based there, I know [Mayor Michael] Bloomberg is working very hard with others to secure it,” Barreto said. “I think it would be an incredible game, like a how do you call it? One-fer. Like in Jacksonville. If we can do it in Jacksonville, we can do it in New York.”
Jacksonville beat out South Florida for the 2005 game in a vote by the owners in 2000.
But Barreto still believes South Florida has a shot and says it doesn’t make sense not to bid. He reminded the 2010 game came South Florida’s way after it was initially promised to New York contingent on the New York Jets receiving government approvals to build a stadium on Manhattan’s West Side. When state funding didn’t come through, the NFL put the game back up for bid to the three runners-up, including South Florida, passed over for the 2009 game, which was held in Tampa.
“From our perspective, you never not bid or walk away,” he said. “Let’s be in it to win it. The beautiful thing is you can win the consolation prize. You’ve got to participate. Do we win them all? No. There’s more newer stadiums to compete with.”
As of May 1, Barreto said the bidders will go to New York to go over their proposals with league officials. The owners will vote at their meeting May 24-26 in Dallas.