With the signs pointing to New York/New Jersey landing the 2014 Super Bowl, the complaints already are coming from Central Florida.
Ira Kaufman of the Tampa Tribune, a publication located in one of the three cities vying for the privilege of hosting the game, believes that the vote “appears to be rigged” for New York.
It wouldn’t be the first time, or the last. In many instances, the vote is a mere formality. For some cities, hosting a Super Bowl became the back end of the quid pro quo premised on full or partial public funding of the stadium where the game is played.
Regardless, the owners do what they choose to do, and if the owners developing an advance sense as to the manner in which they’ll vote means that the vote has been rigged, then so be it.
But we mention Kaufman’s column primarily because it implies that only a simple majority is necessary to deliver the victory. Though he’s basically right, the process is slightly more involved. NFL V.P. of corporate communications Brian McCarthy has supplied us with more details.
All voting will occur by secret ballot, McCarthy said via e-mail. The first vote will include all three locations — New York/New Jersey, Tampa Bay, and South Florida. If one of the three gets 75 percent of the 32 votes (that’s 24 for those of you who, like us, are mathematically challenged), the process ends.
If no location gets 24 the first time around, they do it again. If no city gets 24 votes on the second vote, the third-place finisher falls out of the running.
Then, the owners vote again with only two locations in the running. If one location gets 24, the process ends. If neither gets 24 votes, a final tally is taken, and the simple majority prevails.
As a practical matter, 17 votes will get it done for New York if those 17 owners are dug in and don’t change their minds. If those same 17 cast the same vote every time, the 17 will be enough to deliver the Super Bowl.
There’s also a chance that, in the end, one final vote will be taken in the hopes of getting everyone on board with the process, or at a minimum to create the impression via a 32-0 outcome that all owners are equally comfortable with the notion of playing the game under circumstances that could make everyone involved incredibly uncomfortable.