Campus get-togethers mark Super Bowl Sunday at the U

Jerret Raffety

With less than 50 seconds to play, the nerves of many twittered as the Philadelphia Eagles’ onside kick flipped end-over-end — then right into the hands of the New England Patriots.

Fists pumped. Beverages spilled. Potato chips flew. Some were delighted. Others were enraged. Either way, excitement over Super Bowl XXXIX came all the way to campus on Sunday as many put down their books and celebrated one of the biggest days in sports.

Joseph Grihalva, a first-year College of Liberal Arts student and one host of a Super Bowl party on Seventh Street Southeast, was rooting for the Patriots but said he was still satisfied with the referee’s call.

“It’s justice, because the refs were perceptive enough to notice what’s going on and make the call based on what really happened,” Grihalva said.

But the referees’ call wasn’t enough to save the Eagles, and the Patriots went on to win the game by a score of 24-21.

Dinkytown was not the only place Sunday to catch the game on an oversized television and talk NFL.

A few blocks southeast, at the Sigma Nu fraternity house, several members enjoyed the game together. A gathering of all the members is a rare treat, said Jeff Kopesky, president of the Sigma Nu fraternity at the University.

“It’s hard to get everyone together, because there’s so many of us, and greek students are frequently busy with activities,” said Kopesky, a CLA junior.

The members are using the common interest of football for multiple reasons, he said.

First, the fraternity used the event as a recruitment function, said Blake Jessen, recruitment chairman for the fraternity.

The fraternity hosted five recruits and two pledges Sunday, said Jessen, a first-year Carlson School of Management student.

Second, the fraternity members hosted members of campus sororities at the gathering to spread the word about philanthropic events they are putting on for Sweetheart Week, Kopesky said.

Many guests of the Sigma Nu fraternity house were excited to participate in the annual U.S. phenomenon.

“It’s the most-celebrated unofficial holiday that this country has,” said Lindsey Olsen, a CLA sophomore and Alpha Omicron Pi sorority member.

Coffman Union was buzzing about the game as well. The union showed the game on a screen well more than 100 inches large and in surround sound in the movie theater.

“I love football and thought the largest screen possible would be a great way to view the game,” said Silas Parmar, event organizer and recreation chairman for the Minnesota Programs and Activities Council.

“The players look life-sized on this screen,” said Parmar, an Institute of Technology sophomore.

Meanwhile, a few blocks east, the snacks were out at a Super Bowl get-together in the basement of Territorial Hall.

“We wanted to organize something that would familiarize students with each other,” said Brad Olson, a community adviser at Territorial Hall, who helped organize the event.

Numerous students were hosting Super Bowl parties of their own in their rooms, Olson said.