UD's Joe Flacco leads Baltimore Ravens to Super Bowl win
10:55 p.m., Feb. 3, 2013--The University of Delaware’s Joe Flacco led the Baltimore Ravens to a hard-fought 34-31 victory over the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl XLVII played Sunday night in New Orleans.
Flacco -- who was joined on the Ravens’ roster this year by fellow Blue Hen Gino Gradkowski, a rookie offensive lineman – was named the game’s most valuable player as he completed 22 of 33 passes for 287 yards and three touchdowns.
Gradkowski made a key block on big kickoff return for a touchdown by Jacoby Jones to open the second half.
Flacco capped an outstanding playoff run as he tied an NFL record held by Joe Montana and Kurt Warner with 11 touchdowns passes in the post-season. Flacco did not throw an interception in the post-season.
"This is unbelievable," Flacco told CBS announcer Jim Nantz on the national broadcast. "We don't make it easy, but that's the way it is for us. We did this for the fans back home. We can't wait to get back to Baltimore for the parade."
Flacco and Gradkowski become the first former University of Delaware players to earn Super Bowl rings as active players.
They were the fourth and fifth former Blue Hens to see action in the Super Bowl, joining Ivory Sully who played special teams for the Los Angeles Rams against the Pittsburgh Steelers in 1980, former NFL most valuable player Rich Gannon, who started at quarterback for the Oakland Raiders against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2003 and threw two touchdown passes, and tight end Ben Patrick, who caught a touchdown pass for the Arizona Cardinals in 2009 against the Steelers.
Delaware, one of only 10 schools in the nation to have two quarterbacks start in a Super Bowl, now becomes one of the few schools to produce an NFL most valuable player (Gannon), a Super Bowl MVP (Flacco) and a NFL Pro Bowl MVP (Gannon).
For images of the Super Bowl game, see the UD Athletics Facebook site.
In the days leading up to the Super Bowl, a number of publications, including The New York Times, ran stories about the number of outstanding quarterbacks who have played for UD. The Times story ran with the headline "Delaware, Cradle of Super Bowl Quarterbacks."