On Sunday, February 2, the San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs will meet to crown a champion of the NFL’s 100th season in Super Bowl LIV at HardRock Stadium in Miami, Florida.
There are always headlines surrounding the big game that brings together millions of people around the world, so here’s just a few to catch you up.
San Francisco offensive assistant Katie Sowers will become the first female and openly gay coachto coach in the Super Bowl. Sowers has been with the 49ers for two seasons now, and in total has been a coach in the NFL for four seasons. Prior to San Francisco, she worked with the Atlanta Falcons as a scouting intern.
While Sowers has never played in the NFL, she did play in the Women’s Football Alliance where she actually has ties to Kansas City; having played for the Kansas City Titans. During her time in the WFA, she was a part of the United States Women’s National American Football Team that won the 2013 IFAF Women’s World Championship.
Women in the NFL has become more and more common in a man’s league. Referee Sarah Thomas became the first female to officially call an NFL in 2015, and in 2019 became the first women to officiate a playoff game.
On Sunday night (2/2) in Miami, the 49ers will make history in a different way that also features their coaching staff. Head Coach Kyle Shanahan and his father Mike Shanahan will become the first father and son to have head coached in the Super Bowl.
Mike Shanahan led the Denver Broncos to back-to-back Super Bowl titles in 1997 and 1998 in his third stint in Mile High. Prior to two rings with the Broncos, he actually spent time in San Francisco as offensive coordinator—winning Super Bowl XXIX with the 49ers making it their fifth and most recent title.
Kyle Shanahan will make his second visit to the big game after having been in the NFL for 16 seasons. Previously he was the offensive coordinator for the Falcons in Super Bowl LI back in 2016. Browns fans may know the name very well, as Shanahan was the offensive coordinator for Cleveland in 2014.
The Shanahans actually coached together for Washington. From 2010-2013, Mike was the head coach and Kyle was the offensive coordinator for Washington.
Youth is Key
Kansas City quarterback Patrick Mahomes will become the fifth youngest quarterback to start in the Super Bowl. In just his second full season; the 2018 NFL MVP has led the Chiefs back to the Super Bowl for the first time in 50 years.
Mahomes will be 24 years, 138 days old on the day of Super Bowl LIV. The four quarterbacks to start who were younger than Mahomes were Dan Marino (23 years, 127 days) in Super Bowl XIX, Ben Roethlisberger (23 years, 340 days) in Super Bowl XL, David Woodley (24 years, 97 days) in Super Bowl XVII, and Jared Goff (24 years, 112 days) in 2019. Only Marino and Roethlisberger were able to come out victorious.
Double Girl Power
For some people, the actual game takes a back seat to the halftime show. For the 2020 Pepsi Super Bowl LIV Halftime Show, Shakira and Jennifer Lopez will be featured co-headliners.
It’s not unusual to have multiple acts in the halftime show, but for Super Bowl LIV, Shakira and Lopez are taking center stage together and not as guests for each other. Having the two female Latino artists fits perfectly with the game being played in South Beach, giving the show a real Miami, Latino flare.
Neither Shakira nor Lopez are Miami natives; however, don’t be surprised if Pitbull makes an appearance to represent the host city as he was born and raised in South Beach and has performed multiple times with Lopez.
Titles in Miami
The 49ers have played in the Super Bowl six times, and have won it five times. Two of those championships have been achieved in the city of Miami. San Francisco won Super Bowl XXIII in 1989 vs. Cincinnati at the old Joe Robbie Stadium. They then went on to win Super Bowl XXIX in 1995 vs. San Diego, also at Joe Robbie Stadium.
This will be the eleventh time Miami has hosted the Super Bowl—ahead by just one game to New Orleans, Louisiana. However, New Orleans will match Miami when they host Super Bowl LVIII in 2024.
This will be the first time Kansas City will play in a Miami-hosted Super Bowl.