Super Bowl SATURDAY? Why That Is Never Likely To Happen


Kate Smith, Staff Writer

Almost everyone knows about Super Bowl Sunday, but why is it Sunday?

Super Bowl Saturday has just as much of a ring to it as Super Bowl Sunday, thanks to the handy alliteration of the ‘S’ at the start of both days of the weekend, and yet the big game is always on a Sunday. 

Senior student Cody Scott believes it has to do with tradition. “I think that Super Bowl Sunday isn’t much more than that–a tradition,” he said. “I think if it was held on a Saturday, it would still get the same viewership as it does on Sundays.” 

Palm Beach teenager Frank Ruggeri believes having the game on Saturday would actually increase viewership. He started a petition on two years ago, hoping to get enough signatures in support of making the switch that he could take it to the NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. “It will get more money and get more visitors to the game,” he wrote in his petition. He explained, “[The] NFL will get more television views because most government jobs have Sunday off. It will let more children enjoy their beloved game on TV or at venue.” 

The petition now has nearly 130,000 signatures. Most of those who signed agree that a Saturday Super Bowl game would be more convenient for many fans. As Scott said, “The downside to it being on a Sunday is that most people have to work or go to school the following Monday.” So, there are plenty of people who wish the Super Bowl were on Saturday rather than Sunday, but the switch is highly unlikely to happen. It’s Super Bowl Sunday for a reason, and this reason is largely thanks to Congress.

What does Congress have to do with football? Well, it’s a long story that starts 90 years ago, all the way back in 1932. In those days of the NFL, the club with the best record at the end of a season would be awarded the title of the championship. However, there were multiple ties that year that led to a playoff game being held for the title. After that game turned out to be wildly popular, the NFL decided to institute an annual postseason. 

The question became what day to have the professionals play their postseason games. Since Friday nights were typically reserved for high school football and Saturdays were for college games, that left Sundays open for professional football. It was an unofficial but usually observed rule up until 1961. However, in 1961, Congress stepped in and made it official with the Sports Broadcasting Act, which barred professional football games played on Fridays and Saturdays during the school season from being broadcast. Any postseason games generally still followed the stipulations. The first Super Bowl as it is now was in 1967, played on a Sunday as per the Sports Broadcasting Act, and after 55–56 after this Sunday–years of tradition, it is improbable that the day will be switched in the future. 

Whether it becomes Super Bowl Saturday or always remains Super Bowl Sunday, fans will watch, including Scott. He excitedly said, “I know that my family would still watch it either way!”