Why Is the Super Bowl Called a Bowl Game?

The Super Bowl is called a bowl game because of a long tradition of calling postseason college football games bowl games, beginning with the Rose Bowl. Some sources credit former Kansas City Chiefs owner Lamar Hunt with inventing the Super Bowl name, while others argue that newspapers popularized the name.

The Rose Bowl game took its name from the stadium, which has the same name. Organizers of other postseason college games also named their contests bowl games over the years, and the NFL followed the custom. Hunt says he thought of the Super Bowl name because it sounded similar to the Super Ball toy. Henry Fetter, writing in The Atlantic, disputed that account and argued that newspapers began using the Super Bowl name before Hunt claimed to have invented it.