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Unique Insight into the Upcoming Super Bowl

by Mary-Hope Vass


Although James Madison University doesn’t have an athlete competing for the win this year, it is home to faculty experts who have other experiences and insight with the logistics of making an event of this magnitude, possibly the largest in the country, successfully play out.

Josh Pate, Ph.D. and associate professor at the Hart School of Hospitality, Sport and Recreation Management, knows a thing or two about the planning and logistics of major sporting events. Along with publishing in a variety of journals, he has also taken student groups to the Super Bowl to volunteer and conduct research. 

Since the spring semester kicked off this year, Pate’s lectures examine some of the questions that aren’t often making headlines.

What is the cost involved for cities hosting the Super Bowl? Although the recognition of being a host city is significant, many of the dollars footing that bill come from those living in that city. Their daily services are impacted and shifted for days before and after the event.

Although thousands of visitors visit these host cities and spend lots of money, is consideration given toward the visitors who were planning to visit but changed plans to avoid the sports fanatics?

To pull off a victory of an event where there are potentially 70,000 people in a stadium, plus additional paid staff and those participating in events around the stadium without tickets, it takes more people than you can imagine. Volunteers flock to have a behind-the-scenes viewpoint. How well do these volunteers represent the host city? Many of the volunteers are from other areas, but do they take pride in the city like other volunteers who are residents?

One of the biggest questions lingering in the classroom for this year’s Super Bowl is if the Chick-fil-A in the new Mercedes-Benz Stadium will be open on Super Bowl Sunday? Will the restaurant stick to its longtime policy of being closed on Sunday or throw in the towel for a profit?

For further discussion and insight into the logistics of the Super Bowl, Dr. Josh Pate is available to speak with the media.

Media contact: Mary-Hope Vass, 540-568-7487 or


Published: Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Last Updated: Wednesday, January 30, 2019

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