With the Superbowl just around the corner, the entire world is settling in to park themselves in front of their television sets on their favorite easy chair, break out a cold beer and watch what has been nick named “The Harbaugh Bowl” or “The HarBowl“. Yes, for those who have been living under a rock for the last two weeks, this year’s Super Bowl will be the battle of the brothers. The San Francisco 49ers coached by Jim Harbaugh will be playing the Baltimore Ravens coached by his brother John Harbaugh, obviously the story lines are endless for this game. So how does this tie into professional wrestling? Very easy, this reminds me of another high profiled brother vs brother feud that took place in the WWE ; Bret “The Hitman” Hart vs “The Rocket” Owen Hart.
Bret and Owen Hart treated the wrestling world with a series of matches that would elevate the science of scientific mat wrestling to heights never reached before. Bret’s resume of WWF accomplishments, at the time when their feud started, was without any question much more superior than Owen’s. Bret was already a two time Tag Team Champion, two time Intercontinental Champion, 1993 King of the Ring winner and former WWF Champion. Owen didn’t have any titles under his belt at all, but just the unlimited appetite to make a name for himself as one of the WWF’s top stars. These types of a figures can be compared to both John and Jim. Jim’s football resume would look a lot like Bret Hart’s Wrestling resume, in terms of experience. Jim has an extensive background playing in the NFL for The Chicago Bears, Indianapolis Colts, Baltimore Ravens, San Diego Chargers, Detroit Lions and Carolina Panthers, all totaling from 1987-2001. In addition, Jim bounced back and forth between collegiate levels and professional levels of football in the coaching field. His security and intake of the sport of football is rather extensive and detailed, which brings a tremendous advantage to the final game. However, similar to Owen, John Harbaugh comes into this game with a resume not as elaborate as his brother’s but shows that he is ready to be considered for this dance. For years now, The Baltimore Ravens have been scratching and clawing in their division to gain the overall respect of the fans and media that they are a legitimate threat in the AFC. The Ravens did win the Super Bowl back in 2001, however that was not under John Harbaugh’s watch, nor his quarterback Joey Flacco. Since 2008, John has been not been able to get over the hump in the road known as the New England Patriots led by Tom Brady, until the year’s postseason. Now, this is the time for John to prove to not only to himself but to the rest of the league that him, his quarterback and especially the team are in the conversation of being “Elite”.
At Wrestlemania 10, Owen went into his match with his brother Bret understanding that he was the ultimate underdog in the match and that not one soul was counting on him getting the victory. In a 20 minute classic, Owen showed the entire planet that he is not the “Black Hart” of the family, but he is without any question, the Hart to be reckoned with. Owen convinced the world that his name should be in the conversation of top stars, when he was able to get the 1-2-3 victory over his brother and shocking the entire world. This match showed that yes, background and experience is very vital and deep rooted, however, when there is an unlimited amount of determination and heart (no pun intended) within you, the sky is the limit. And Owen proved this to be true. Could this theory be exercised at the big game on Sunday? Or will the experience factor play the dominate role, similar to how it was a factor when Bret faced Owen in a cage match at Summer Slam 1994 and won? There is only one way that we will find out.
Also, a bit of a fun fact, when John Harbaugh played for Miami (of Ohio) University as a defensive back, guess who his roomate was? none other than Flyin’ Brian Pillman. And to add to the whole six degrees of separation theory, Pillman was a member of the “Hart Foundation” stable in the WWF in 1997, lead by none other than Bret and Owen Hart. Gotta love this stuff.
Maurice D. Proffit is a Writer for Rant Sports