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How has the Super Bowl changed?

Published On: Dec 07 2011 10:34:44 AM CST
Updated On: Jan 08 2013 08:45:28 AM CST
football close-up laces

A lot of things have changed since the first Super Bowl was played back in January 1967. Pictured is Bart Starr, quarterback of the Green Packers, winners of the first Big Game.

Eight new teams have been added to the NFL since then, and some of the cities teams play in have changed (for example, the Oakland Raiders moved to Los Angeles, then back to Oakland).

If you wanted to get into the first Super Bowl, you could probably get tickets for less than $10.

Flash forward more than 40 years, and you'll find that the cheapest tickets to recent Super Bowls have face values of closer to $700. Actual prices paid for tickets can be thousands of dollars.

Of course, if you'd been buying a ticket to the first Super Bowl, no one would have known what you were talking about. The first Super Bowl was actually called the "AFL-NFL World Championship Game" and was played between the winner of the AFL and NFL -- two competing football leagues.

The game as it exists today (since 1970, actually) is the championship of the NFL, which is made up of the AFC and NFC (American Football Conference and National Football Conference).

If you were watching that first Super Bowl live from the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, you would have been treated to a halftime show featuring the marching bands from the University of Arizona and the University of Michigan.

A recent Super Bowl featured entertainment from rock supergroup The Who.

If you watched the first Super Bowl on television, you would have been treated to a football game, and not a lot else.

Recent Super Bowls have featured something else: advertising. Commercials have become almost as important as the actual football game itself, and it is estimated that one out of every 12 people watching the Super Bowl do so because of the commercials.

Salaries also are vastly different now. In the 1960s, when the first Super Bowl occurred, quarterback Joe Namath of the New York Jets signed a then-record contract worth more than $400,000, according to Sports Illustrated.