Tag Archives: San Francisco 49ers

Loving the Chiefs’ back story

I am happy to proclaim that for the first time since I cannot remember I actually have an interest in professional football’s final game of the 2019-20 season.

Super Bowl LIV is coming up. I am pulling hard for the Kansas City Chiefs to win against the San Francisco 49ers.

I have not a single thing against the Niners. They’re a fine team, coming from a fine program. They have wonderful fans; a beloved member of my family is one of them. They have a storied history of winning the Super Bowl.

Which brings me to one of the key reasons why I am pulling for the Chiefs.

You know perhaps already that I am a staunch American Football Conference fan, owing to my previous allegiance to the American Football League, of which the Chiefs are a charter member, although they did enter the AFL as the Dallas Texans; the Texans moved to KC in 1963.

The Chiefs have played in two Super Bowls, the first one and the fourth one. They lost the initial AFL-NFL World Championship Game — which wasn’t even yet called the “Super Bowl” — in 1967; the Green Bay Packers beat the Chiefs 35-10. Ahh, but the Chiefs came back in 1970 to defeat the heavily favored Minnesota Vikings; the score was 23-7.

So, it’s been 50 years since the Chiefs lined up in the Super Bowl. Fifty years! The 49ers have been to six of them. What’s more, the 49ers have won five of their Super Bowl games. Do you get where I’m going with this?

The Chiefs are long overdue to play, let alone win, this media extravaganza that now masquerades as a football game.

Do I care about the halftime show? Or the commercials? Maybe the halftime show; I mean, who can look away from Shakira and JLo, eh? The commercials … not so much.

I am intently interested in the behemoths who’ll be beating the daylights out of each other during the game.

So, there you have it.

Pass the popcorn.

Candlestick Park goes out with flair

The San Francisco 49ers played their final home game at Candlestick Park on Monday night.

Soon, the old stadium will be relegated to … whatever. Trash. Dust. People’s memory.

I hate seeing these old parks going away. The Houston Astrodome is likely to be demolished. I saw a couple of football games there: a high school playoff game and an NFL game between the Houston Oilers and the Cincinnati Bengals. The Oilers won big.


Yes, I have a Candlestick Park memory. It’s a good one.

I went to San Francisco in August 1964, having won a trip there by selling enough subscriptions to my hometown newspaper, the Portland Oregonian. It was a huge deal for me. I was 14 and had never been to California. The trip seemed like it took forever. I think we rode the bus for 12 hours.

Part of the trip involved seeing a baseball game at Candlestick.

The game would be between the SF Giants and the Cincinnati Reds. It was before they enclosed the stadium with seats. The outfield was exposed to the bay — and all the wind that blew in from the water. I’m telling you, the place used to be a wind tunnel in the old days.

Well, the game was a pretty cool thing for a teenage baseball fan to see. I saw three Hall of Famers that windswept afternoon: Willie Mays and Willie McCovey played for the Giants. McCovey hit a home run into right field, straight into the teeth of the wind.

The third HOFer, though, stole the show. Frank Robinson of the Reds hit three dingers out that day. The Reds won the game; I think the score was 7-1. Robinson would be traded two years later to the Baltimore Orioles, where all he did was win the Triple Crown in 1966.

Oh, the memories.

So long, Candlestick.