The Super Bowl is the championship game of the National Football League (NFL), during which the National Football Conference (NFC) winner plays against the winner of the American Football Conference (AFC).
This historic sporting event is the culmination of many months of games played during the regular season, which begins in late summer of the previous calendar year.
The NFL officially formed in 1920; however, the first Super Bowl didn’t occur for another 40-plus years. In 1960, another group of men wanted to own a football franchise apart from the NFL but were denied in 1960, so they created an alternative league known today as the American Football League (AFL). It wasn’t until 1986 that the owners negotiated an agreement to merge the leagues in 1970 after years of rivalry.
The first Super Bowl took place in 1966 under the name “AFL-NFL World Championship Game” played by the Green Bay Packers and the Kansas City Chiefs. The name changed in 1967 when the league began to use the term “Super Bowl,” which ultimately caught on. Each annual Super Bowl is identified by Roman numbers.
This year’s Super Bowl LIV—or 54—will take place Sunday, Feb. 2, 2020 at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens. The highly anticipated event garners a massive following every year; it is broadcasted to more than 170 countries nationwide and features a half-time show that has included past performers including Prince, Bruce Springsteen, Madonna, Beyoncé, Coldplay and Lady Gaga.
The winning team receives the Vince Lombardi Trophy. The award is named after the coach of the Green Bay Packers, the winners of the first two Super Bowl games. The team additionally won three of the preceding NFL championships in 1961,1962 and 1965. The first award given as the Vince Lombardi Trophy went to the Baltimore Colts following their win in 1971’s Super Bowl V, played in Miami.