AFC Champs!

The 1970 AFC Champion Kansas City Chiefs led by quarterback Len Dawson, top, and the 2020 AFC Champion Chiefs led by Patrick Mahomes.

STU BUTCHER

In the waning minutes of the Kansas City Chiefs 35-24 AFC Championship win Sunday over Tennessee to earn their first trip to the Super Bowl in 50 years, a sign showed up in the stands, “I’ve waited my whole life for this!”

Bless their hearts.

I have to admit I witnessed the first Super Bowl on Jan. 15, 1967.

Of course, it was by watching television. Did you know that game remains the only Super Bowl to have been simulcast in the United States by two networks? NBC had the rights to nationally televise AFL games, while CBS held the rights to broadcast NFL games; both were allowed to televise that game.

I’m assuming we watched the AFL broadcast, but I can’t say that for sure.

Hall of Famers Bobby Bell, Buck Buchanan, Len Dawson, Johnny Robinson and Emmitt Thomas took the field that day, a 35-10 loss for the Chiefs after trailing the Green Bay Packers just 14-10 at the half. I happen to own a football signed by Bobby Bell, who took part in the presentation of the Lamar Hunt Trophy. 

I attended a Super Bowl party that day, but not like those thrown today; it was just a bunch of neighborhood kids getting together to watch the game.  

So I’ve been officially a Chiefs fan for more than 50 years.

My strongest memory of Super Bowl IV when Kansas City claimed the ring with a 23-7 win over Minnesota is Otis Taylor’s 45-yard TD reception from Len Dawson to salt it away.

In 1970, the game wasn’t seen on big screen, high-definition televisions and there wasn’t social media so accolades and videos could be shared.

The memories were more difficult to bring to mind, but the satisfaction can be matched.

KB Criss, former superintendent and football coach for Humboldt USD 258, had this to say during the game.

“Go Chiefs! Keep playing.....WIN this game....all my fan struggles through the Bill Kenny, Steve Fuller, the draft bust of Todd Blackledge, the days under Schottenhiemer with a great D and no O....the nights waking up in a sweat seeing Joe Montana’s head bouncing off that cold turf in Buffalo.....the days under Vermiel with a great O and no D.....playoff misses when the table was set with home field advantage ‘Lin Elliot wide right’ ....me paying $300 (as a college student) to set in the top row and freeze my toes off to see Jim Harbaugh’s Colts pull off the upset.....Dee Ford’s offsides penalty.....will be made worth it for remaining an ultimate faithful Chiefs fan! Come on boys, Hoz and Moose wiped off those days and took me back to the Brett, Saberhagen, McRae, Amos Otis years...you can do it to! Come on fellas, a lot of years here....waiting my whole life for the Chiefs to be in the Super Bowl! Finish It!” (sic)

Yes, there were many lows for devoted Chiefs fans, but the highs can get even better with a Super Bowl win against the 49ers. I can’t wait.

Oh, and by the way, the heavens are celebrating, too.

An old neighbor, Paul Gobea (Kansas City) noted about his deceased parents, brother and nephew: “I’m convinced that Dad, Mom, Tom and Nic said, ‘OK Chiefs let’s go onto the Super Bowl.’”

And a cousin of mine, Kylee King Broomall (National Park, N.J.) had this to say: “Happy Heavenly Birthday to my brother Kolby and my Grandpa (Ed) King. I am sure they will be cheering for the Chiefs together.”

 

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