Wednesday, December 23, 2009

On this day: the Immaculate Reception

In 1973, the Steelers and Raiders were playing a playoff game in Pittsburgh. Down 7-6 at their own 40 with 4th-and-10 and five seconds left, Terry Bradshaw threw a pass downfield. The pass bounced off Raider Jack Tatum (or maybe Steeler John Fuqua, which at the time would have been illegal) but was caught just off the ground by Franco Harris, who ran it in for a touchdown. You have to see it to believe it. The pass was called The Immaculate Reception.

According to a 2000 article in the Post Gazette, the name was coined in a bar in Pittsburgh, and has had legs since.

Peaks started coming at anniversaries, especially the 20th (1992) and 25th (1997) (this is a frequent theme we'll explore with anniversaries) with the term's use peaking from the mid-1990s to the mid-2000s, and beginning to decline, a bit.

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