San Francisco 49ers

The ‘L’ word: NFL ditches tradition for Bay Area Super Bowl

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Et tu, NFL?

The league is taking a one-year break from using Roman numerals for its Super Bowls. The game in Santa Clara in two years won’t be known as Super Bowl “L,” but rather Super Bowl 50. Purists and classics majors can rest easy knowing that the following year’s big game in Houston will be Super Bowl LI.

The league thought the number 50 was more dramatic and aesthetically pleasing than a single Roman numeral. In teenage pop culture circles, an “L” – made by extending the forefinger and thumb – also stands for “Loser.” (Your daughter told you it meant, “Love you, Daddy”, didn’t she?)

The league made two logos for the game, which will be played on Feb. 7, 2016, at Levi’s Stadium, the new home of the 49ers.

The national logo has the Lombardi Trophy centered between large, golden – because this is the Golden State – numerals 5 and 0. The regional logo has the trophy centered in the 49ers’ new stadium in Santa Clara. Behind it is the number 50 with the San Francisco skyline reflected in it. As the image acknowledges, the game will be played in the South Bay, but most of the events leading up to it will be in San Francisco.

– Matt Barrows