It’s that time of year again! The world’s biggest sporting event is here and SkateHut has all the info and all the gear you’ll need to enjoy this years Superbowl!
Superbowl LII (that’s 52) will be played in Minnesota between the New England Patriots and the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday 4th February.
New England are the most successful American Football franchise in history, lead by all-star quarterback Tom Brady, the Patriots will be appearing in a record tenth Superbowl having won five of them!
The Philadelphia Eagles have had a fantastic season finishing top of their conference but were struck by injury; losing there number one quarterback Carson Wentz just two weeks before the end of the regular season. Relying on second string QB Nick Foles, the Eagles surprised many by making it to the Superbowl, they enter this year as the underdogs.
American Football provides a totally different sport for those used to the continuous play of football and rugby. The game offers a slower and staggered pace of play with a higher focus on play by play tactics creating explosive action, moments of suspense and enough time to catch your breathe before the next amazing play.
The game itself lasts for one hour of play split in to 4 quarters; with stops, play setting and timeouts games regularly last around 3 hours. For a full breakdown of the players, rules and everything else you need to know to understand what you’re watching I will defer to the NFL’s Beginners Guide:
The Superbowl itself will be aired on BBC One between 23:15 – 03:50 (yep, it’s a late one!). Huge artists will be there to give added entertainment with Pink providing the pregame performance and Justin Timberlake performing the Halftime Show.
A GROWING FANBASE
American Football is a staple of American culture and in recent years it’s built an ever growing following over this side of the pond. Popularity for the sport is on the rise thanks to more people playing the sport, combined with increased TV coverage and the introduction of NFL games played in the UK, for the NFL international series’.
More and more students are getting the opportunity to play the sport in the British Universities American Football League (BUAFL), which since 2008 has been officially associated with the NFL through NFL UK. University gives students a chance to try a wide range of new and exciting activities, with American Football falling perfectly within that category. This gives the opportunity to not only play the sport but also become immersed in the culture. I started playing at Falmouth University in Cornwall, as well as sitting on the committee to help run the team and having the opportunity to train alongside the Cornish men’s team (The Cornish Sharks).
Recent increased TV coverage has definitely helped make the sport more accessible to fans in the UK, The BBC has aired two weekly NFL based shows for the past two seasons: The NFL Show and NFL This Week, which provide highlights and recaps of the weeks games, with punditry from two former NFL players as well as English sports presenter Mark Chapman.
As previously mentioned, since 2007 there have been regular international NFL season games at London’s Wembley Stadium, with more games being added in 2013 and 4 games in total being played in both Wembley and Twickenham. This year the UK will host 3 games in October.
American Football fan or not, sports fan or not, the Superbowl is not to be missed; it’s the worlds biggest sporting event for a reason. Grab your mates, some food (and maybe something for people to do during the stops to keep them awake) for an awesome night of good old-fashioned American sports fun!
Don’t forget your gear! Every fan needs to represent their team and you’re going to want to look the part on Superbowl Sunday; Skatehut has all the NFL headwear you’ll need with caps, beanies and snapbacks!
Check out our NFL Range Here