Wilson Sporting Goods Creates Over 200 Footballs for Super Bowl
MINNEAPOLIS -- As sports fans gear up to watch the big game, one business has been prepping all season to make one important piece of equipment ready for play.
Wilson Sporting Goods has been making footballs for the NFL since 1941. Plant Manager Dan Riegle says their employees see their craft as art.
"It takes two-three months to learn sew a football so we want our operators to stay. People don't believe we make a football like this in a factory but this is our way."
Wilson set up a mini factory at the Super Bowl Fan Experience at the Minneapolis Convention Center this week. The set up was to show how the company makes roughly 3,000 game footballs per day.
"We sew the ball together inside out, then we turn it right-side out and put a bladder in it, lace it shut, put it in the mold, when it comes out it's ready to be inspected and be used in the NFL."
Wilson and the NFL is one of the longest working relationships in pro sports. Riegle says for the Super Bowl alone each team gets over 100 handmade footballs.
"Each team gets 108 footballs that they can take to the game. They may not use them all but they have them ready if need."
So when you get ready to watch your favorite super star take the field, keep an eye on the ball, for now you know the path it took to get there.