Blugolds react to the Patriots’ historic Super Bowl victory

    Eau Claire football fans respond to Super Bowl LI, discuss overtime and the Patriots comeback

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    Photo by Graham Rowe

    Kevin Gerovac and Dominic Craig discuss the Patriots winning their fifth Super Bowl in overtime.

    UW-Eau Claire students had a range of opinions and emotions about the New England Patriots taking home their fifth Super Bowl victory  Sunday, winning 34-28 against the Atlanta Falcons in overtime.

    This was not only the biggest comeback in Super Bowl history, but also the first Super Bowl to ever go into overtime.

    It was 28-28 in the fourth quarter, and the Patriots won the coin toss and were able to keep possession of the ball to the very end, winning their fifth Super Bowl.

    “I would say it’s one of the greatest games I’ve ever seen. Just because of all the incredible catches, and then also the Patriots coming back from being down 25 in the second half and coming back to win it in overtime. It was insane,” said Kevin Gerovac, a senior accounting and finance student .

    One of the raved catches was made by Julian Edelman of New England in which the ball was knocked out of the air by Robert Alford and there was a collision of Falcon defenders.

    “I would say the turnovers, the force fumble, the pick, just going 3-and-out in the second half really helped them and then just gave Tom Brady an opportunity to do what he does to drive down the field and score every time,” Dominic Craig, a senior marketing student said.

    Gerovac added by saying the Patriots’ defense stepped up big time which enabled them to get some important turnovers. In addition, he said the Falcons offense did not change much even though they were still making ridiculous catches and moving the ball, like Julio Jones on the sideline with his sideline catch.

    The improbable win by the Patriots and the first overtime Super Bowl win has caused some debate as to whether an opposing team should be able to possess the ball after one team scores a touchdown.

    The current NFL rule is that there is a “sudden death,” where the first team that scores a touchdown wins the game.  However, the opposing team may have a rebuttal if there was a field goal made.

    Some students, like Mary Hanson and Dalton Zmolek disagreed with the rule by saying both teams should be able to have possession of the ball and the rule is different in college (unfair).

    Craig and Gerovac both liked the rule. They argued if a professional team is not able to defend then they do not deserve to win the Super Bowl. They did think being able to rebut a field goal is a smart decision so the other team is able to get a chance.

    Many students saw the game as a major comeback for the Patriots rather than a loss for the Falcons.

    Hanson said she thought the Falcons had in their heads that they were going to win the game by the the fourth quarter. She added she thought the Falcons just let go, which let Tom Brady come in with the offense.

    “How can’t that be a major comeback, like when you were down over 20 points and then you go and win the Super Bowl in overtime?” Hanson said.

    While most Blugolds have not been around to see the vast majority of the Super Bowls, many students would say this one was “One of the best games they’ve seen” and “a game to remember.”