Today in Sports History: January 14th


(Bart Starr lines up from center. Photo courtesy of Sports Illustrated)

1/14/1954 - Joe and Marilyn tie the knot

One of the most famed celebrity marriages of all time occurs as Joe DiMaggio, the former outfielder for the New York Yankees, and famed actress Marilyn Monroe elope. The honeymoon did not last long, literally. After just 274 days, Monroe filed for divorce. Their marriage would later be described as an extremely combative one.

DiMaggio never lost his feelings for her though. In the early 60's, he began to see her again and there were rumors that the two would eventually re-marry; Joe was reportedly concerned over the people Monroe had surrounded herself with. Not long after that, Monroe was found dead in her home from a drug overdose; her death was officially deemed a suicide, though for years and years, some speculated that she was murdered because of her connections to the Kennedy family.

DiMaggio personally handled Monroe's funeral and barred certain socialites, such as Frank Sinatra and Sammy Davis Jr., from attending. "If it wasn't for them, she'd still be here," he said grimly. DiMaggio would have flowers delivered to her grave at least once a week for more than twenty years. In "DiMaggio: Setting the Record Straight," Joe's sports agent, Morris Engelberg, wrote that the former MVP once confided that he believed the Kennedy brothers had arranged for her death. "They murdered the one person I loved," he was quoted saying.

1/14/1968 - Packers win back-to-back Super Bowls

The Green Bay Packers beat the Oakland Raiders, 33-14, to win Super Bowl II. For the second straight year, Bart Starr won the game's MVP by completing a touchdown and throwing for 202 yards. The highlight of the contest occurred after the game, when the Packers lifted up head coach Vince Lombardi and carried him into the locker room.

The Raiders would remain a dominate team in the AFC for another twenty years and won the Super Bowl in 1976, 1980, and 1983. The Packers, on the other hand, fell out of contention with the retirement of Vince Lombardi. Over the next 25 years, the Packers would win just one playoff game and became one of the lowliest teams in the NFC -- a hard fall for the team that had won more NFL Championship games than anybody.

As for the game, it is retroactively referred to as Super Bowl II, though at the time it was known as the second "AFL-NFL World Championship Game." The next year, the game took its familiar name after Lamar Hunt convinced NFL commissioner Pete Rozelle to make the switch. Hunt, who thought of the idea after watching his daughter bounce a super ball, also convinced the commissioner to add roman numerals to the game's title, feeling it conveyed more significance.

1/14/1973 - Miami ends season with 17-0 record

The Miami Dolphins win Super Bowl VII to end their season with a perfect record, cementing their legacy as one of the greatest teams of all time.

To read more about this story, click here for an in-depth Inhistoric article:

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