Every time Peyton Manning throws a pass or Cam Newton takes off to run in Sunday’s Super Bowl, they’ll be gripping a football made in a quaint Ohio village 2,000 miles away.
Ada, Ohio, is home to the Wilson Sporting Goods factory that makes footballs used by the NFL, many of the nation’s top college teams, high schools, and more.
The Wilson football brand is so dominant that plant manager Dan Riegle says every offensive point scored in an NFL game since 1941 was with one of the company’s footballs.
“We’re kind of proud of that fact,” Riegle said.
The factory’s 100-plus employees make between 3,000 and 4,000 footballs a day and around 700,000 per year, according to Riegle, who said Wilson sent Manning’s Denver Broncos and Newton’s Carolina Panthers 108 footballs each after the teams qualified for this year’s NFL title game near San Francisco. The footballs feature the Super Bowl 50 logo, the team names, the date of the game, and its location.
“We treat it just like we do every other football we make, yet we know this ball is a little bit different — especially since it’s Super Bowl 50. I mean, that’s pretty big,” Riegle said.
Filed Under: Industrial automation