Definition: LUCK; When preparation meets opportunity.
...........INASMUCH AS THIS Game was played January 12, 1969, we'll assume that all should know the score and final outcome; hence there are no true "spoilers."
UNLIKE THE EXHIBITION of a film or the broadcasting of a television programs, the televising of an athletic event, which is going out over the airwaves has to be an exercise in improvisation, ad libbing and the possession of cat-like, quick reflexes. We've long felt that the Sports Department of any of the many countless radio and television networks are really much more akin to that of a news bureau.
IN THE MAKING of a great and historical event, the main ingredient must be that of preparation. No matter what sort of game or match we have on hand, the professionals in the broadcast booth, at the stadia and behind the scenes have to be at their very best. They must be able to impart as much background info as possible as well as presenting any sort of anecdotal side bars that pertain to the participants; which has the effect of humanizing our athlete-heroes.
THERE IS NO doubt that NBC Sports did itself proud in this production for the presentation of SUPER BOWL III, Sunday, January, 1969. The men on the play-by-play, the color men and the sideline reporters all were guys at the top of their game and their careers. The "starting line-up" was as follows: Curt Gowdy-Play by Play, Al DeRogtis-Color, Kyle Rote-Color, Jim Simpson-Post Game/Trophy Presentation and Pat Summerall-Analyst.
FORTUNATELY FOR ALL, the fates were most agreeable and the gods smiled down on the game. Outstanding competitors wore the uniforms on both sides of the field. Our afternoon was graced with a surprise victory by the New York Jets. Their very colorful, un-shy and talented Quarterback, "Broadway" Joe Namath had predicted the upset and practically guaranteed it.
SO WE HAD the good fortune to witness a great, if low scoring game at the Orange Bowl in Miami, Florida. It was an important occurrence in the history of Pro Football as the upstart American Football League had a victory under its belt. Although the planned merger with the NFL was moving toward its 1970 totality, there was concern about the issue of parity between the two league's member teams. The Jets' victory assured that at least there was movement in the proper direction.
THERE WAS NOT a total absence of the melancholy in this year's game. As joyous and upbeat was Namath's ascent to the top of the grid iron world. Every coronation means that someone is reduced in rank and position. In this case, it was Baltimore Colts Quarterback, Johnny Unitas, who was sort of pushed from the spotlight.
SUFFERING WITH INJURIES all season, John was on the bench as back up man to Earl Morrall; who had an outstanding season in leading the Colts to the NFL Crown. When the Colts appeared to be unable to move the ball under Morrall's field generalship, the team called upon Unitas to enter late in the game.
ALTHOUGH UNITAS DID look sharp and perform well, it was too little, too late. Final: NY JETS 16, Baltimore Colts 7.
BUT, NO MATTER the score and outcome, the NBC production team performed at the highest level, as we have come to expect.
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