Indiana readies for Super Bowl 2012

February 7, 2011

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The Chicago Bears fell short of their goal of making to this year’s Super Bowl.

But if they should make it next year, they won’t have far to travel to play in it - nor will their fans.

That’s because the 2012 Super Bowl will be played in Indianapolis, a mere two hours away from Chicago.

A contingent of Indiana officials headed to Dallas to get some tips and promote the city.

Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels joined Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard in Texas to see how Dallas pulled it off.

To prepare for the big game, Indianapolis officials have invested millions.

Some predict the city could see an economic windfall of up to $400 million by hosting America’s biggest one-day sporting event.

Jack Swarbrick, athletic director at the University of Notre Dame, helped Indy lure next year’s Super Bowl.

“If you can host the Super Bowl successfully you can host anything. And it will change the county’s perception of Indianapolis to some degree and its status and what it can achieve,” Swarbrick told WSJV-TV in South Bend this week.  

Daniels’ spokeswoman Jane Jankowski said the governor didn’t stay for the actual game that saw the Green Bay Packers defeat the Pittsburgh Steelers 31 to 25 in a thrilling game.

Jankowski said Daniels left Dallas Saturday but not before promoting the city.

“Gov. Daniels planned on attending some business and economic development meetings, as he's done on previous Super Bowl trips; and assisting the Indianapolis Host Committee, primarily with appearances and interviews,” Jankowski said.

Of course, without an indoor facility, Chicago may never play host to a Super Bowl.

Indy doesn’t have that problem.

Its two-year-old Lucas Oil Stadium has a retractable roof to keep the cold and snow out.