Super Bowl

[ soo-per bohl ]
/ ˈsu pər ˌboʊl /
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the annual NFL championship football game between the best team of the National Football Conference and that of the American Football Conference.



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The rainy weather could not ________ my elated spirits on my graduation day.
See also Big Game.

Origin of Super Bowl

First recorded in 1965–70
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021


What is the Super Bowl?

The Super Bowl is the championship game of the National Football League (NFL), a professional American football league.

The game features the champions of the NFL’s two conferences, the American Football Conference (AFC) and National Football Conference (NFC). These teams are the winners of their conference’s playoff, which follows a 16-game regular season. The team that wins the Super Bowl is the league champion.

In contrast to other major professional team sports in the U.S. (such as baseball, basketball, and hockey) that determine the league champion with a championship series, the Super Bowl is a single game.

When is the Super Bowl?

The Super Bowl is typically held on the first Sunday in February (though for many years it was held in late January). The start of the game (kickoff) is usually around 6:30 p.m. Eastern time.

There is usually a two-week gap between the conference championship games and the Super Bowl (meaning the Super Bowl is played two weeks after the conference championship games, with no game occurring in the weeks between).

The date of Super Bowl LV in 2021 is February 7. Super Bowl LVI in 2022 falls on February 6, 2022.

More information and context on Super Bowl

The NFL championship game was first called the Super Bowl in 1967. It was created as a result of the merger of the NFL and the American Football League (AFL). The bowl in Super Bowl comes from the tradition of calling football championships bowl games (due to being played in large stadiums sometimes called bowls).

Because the name Super Bowl is a trademarked term, the game is sometimes referred to as the Big Game, such as by advertisers who do not have permission to use the official name. Each year’s Super Bowl is usually named with a number written in Roman numerals, a tradition that began in 1971 for the fifth Super Bowl, labeled Super Bowl V.

The team who wins the Super Bowl is awarded the Vince Lombardi Trophy, which is named for famed football coach Vince Lombardi, whose Green Bay Packers won the first two Super Bowls. Players and coaches on the winning team are also each awarded a unique Super Bowl ring, with players also receiving a cash bonus.

The Super Bowl is known as a widely televised event watched by a massive worldwide audience (sometimes 100 million viewers or more). Advertisers pay millions of dollars to air commercials during the broadcast, and these have become part of the appeal of the Super Bowl for many viewers. The game also usually includes a halftime show featuring a popular musical act.

Many people in the U.S. host or attend Super Bowl parties, including some who are not especially passionate football fans (or even football fans at all). All of this has made the Super Bowl a significant event in U.S. pop culture.

Due to this popularity, the term Super Bowl is sometimes used to refer to a championship or competitive event in another activity, as in This is the Super Bowl of robotics competitions. 

What are some terms that often get used in discussing the Super Bowl?

How is Super Bowl used in real life?

The Super Bowl is a major pop culture event that’s popular even among some people who are not football fans.


Try using Super Bowl!

True or False?

The Super Bowl is held on February 1 every year.

British Dictionary definitions for Super Bowl

Super Bowl


American football the main championship game of the sport, held annually in January between the champions of the American Football Conference and the National Football Conference
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Cultural definitions for Super Bowl

Super Bowl

The championship game of the National Football League, held each year in January or February.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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