One man finds connections between Presidents and Superbowls

    This weekend the 44th Super Bowl will be played. As it happens, Barack Obama is the nation’s 44th president. A minor coincidence, perhaps. But a local writer has turned it into a quirky contest that caught the attention of “The New Yorker” and “Talk of the Nation,” among others.

    Caption: Don Steinberg
    This weekend the 44th Super Bowl will be played. As it happens, Barack Obama is the nation’s 44th president. A minor coincidence, perhaps. But a local writer has turned it into a quirky contest that caught the attention of The New Yorker and Talk of the Nation, among others.

    We met up with Don Steinberg the other day in a Center City sports bar.

    Listen:
    [audio: 100204PCBOWL.mp3]

    On his blog, America Bowl, Don Steinberg takes a list of 43 Super Bowls and matches them with the 43 presidents. Steinberg asks you to consider: What was better? The game or the president?

    Take our 34th president, Dwight D. Eisenhower.

    He ended the Korean War, started the Interstate Highway System, and warned us about the military-industrial complex. But Steinberg says our 34th Super Bowl in 2000 gave him a run for his money.

    Steinberg: The Titans against the Rams. The Titans got the ball down to the 1 yard line at the end of the game and just got stopped short. It was an amazing game. I had to give it to the game, even though Eisnhower was a well-respected two-term president.

    As Steinberg flips through his loose-leaf notes, he denies his criteria are subjective…

    Steinberg: You must think I’m Rain Man.

    He thinks it’s pretty clear whether a presidential term, or a football game, has been good or bad.

    Steinberg: This is really insane, isn’t it?

    Maybe, but Steinberg’s gimmick has landed him in the national spotlight. He will post the results of the final contest – Obama versus Super Bowl 44 – on Monday.

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