Jim Whiddon Reflects on Football and Forecasts
On January 15, 1967, the first-ever AFL–NFL world championship, better known as Super Bowl I, was played between the Kansas City Chiefs and the Green Bay Packers. Here are some interesting facts about that game:
- Tickets cost as little as $6 each. (For this year’s game, the face value of ticket prices ranged from $500 to $2,600.)
- Just 62,000 people attended Super Bowl I held at the Memorial Coliseum in Los Angeles.
- In a rare, two-network broadcast, CBS and NBC both aired the game.
- Approximately 24 million viewers watched the first game, compared with an estimated 108 million viewers in 2013.
Despite all of the buildup surrounding the Super Bowl this week, it is just another form of exciting entertainment with an unpredictable ending. Will the Seattle Seahawks with their No. 1-rated defense prevail? Or will the Denver Broncos, led by Peyton Manning and the highest-scoring offense of all time, triumph in the quest for the Lombardi Trophy? Sports commentators far and wide will be shaping many a plot about key players going into Sunday’s game, but none of those storylines will ultimately affect the outcome. On Monday, many will utter the familiar refrain, “Wait until next year,” the confetti will be swept away and another season will be in the record books.
Much like the sports world’s talking heads, stock market prognosticators also tend to use hype as a primary tool of their craft. The trouble is — unlike the six-month hiatus we have from football — financial forecasters perpetually predict. Investors should understand that the chatty analysts who stand on the sidelines of the markets are there to sell advertising — just like those highly compensated gridiron commentators who want you to watch their show for higher ratings but will not be calling any plays themselves.
However, there is at least one group of people in pro football that manages to avoid the hype: coaches. Occasionally, a coach gets worked up over a bad call by an official or an ill-advised play by one of his players. But these successful coaches are generally calm and reserved. Ever planning, they look for evidence that provides an insightful understanding of what should be done for the good of their team. They formulate a plan that represents their strategic mission. And above all else, they know that when preparation meets opportunity, good things happen in the long run.
The same characteristics can be found in a trusted advisor. There to act in your best interest, they advise ignoring the noise of the market and staying the course with what has worked well season in and season out. When the markets get a little too exciting, they are there to calmly help you follow your plan without giving in to the desire to throw a Hail Mary.
Enjoy the game, and may your team win! If it doesn’t, summer training camp will be here before you know it. Your advisor — as ever — will be there for you on Monday morning.
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