Saturday, January 22, 2011

Bears Versus Packers - Physics and Football Shared History

OK, a bit of background info for those not familiar with American Football, and those who are not into sports. The Chicago Bears football team will be playing against the Green Bay Packers tomorrow (Sunday) in a football playoff to determine who will go to the Superbowl (the championship game). These two teams, the Bears and the Packers, are arch rivals, sharing a long history and tradition in this sports, very much like, say, Manchester United and Liverpool in UK soccer.

Strangely enough, they haven't met each other that much in the playoffs, even though they of course play each other at least twice during the regular season. In fact, the last time they met in the playoffs was in 1941..... 1941.... hum, doesn't that year ring a bell to science historian?

Well, by golly, that does ring a bell. In this news article, the significance of that year connects the significance of the Bears-Packers last encounter here in the Chicago area.

The achievement that South Side statue commemorates was made by an Italian physicist, Enrico Fermi. He arrived at the University of Chicago shortly after the Bears beat the Packers on Dec. 14, 1941, and built a uranium pile underneath the stands of Stagg Field, the university's football stadium, that unleashed the power of the atom.

There ya go! The last time these two teams met in the playoffs, a monumental event took place after that. I wonder what earth-shattering discovery will take place after this one! :)


1 comment:

rob said...

apparently cold fusion in Italy.