OSSINING, N.Y. - Just as he has done three times before, Mike Sterlacci will be in the stands come Super Bowl Sunday to cheer on the New York Giants.
“It’s the place to be,” Sterlacci said. “If you had the choice, where else would you want to be on Super Bowl Sunday?”
The 67-year-old self-proclaimed die hard Giants fan watched from his Ossining home in 2007 when his team pulled off an improbable comeback against the Patriots in Super Bowl XLII. Sterlacci said he had an opportunity days before the game to buy tickets to the big game but the best deal he could find was a little out of his price range.
“The guy wanted $3,000 for the tickets and I didn’t take them,” Sterlacci recalled. If he knew the underdog Giants were going to upset the previously undefeated Patriots 17-14 in Glendale, Ariz., the $3,000 would not have stood in his way. “Of course I would’ve gotten the tickets. No question.”
Sterlacci will be at Sunday’s game in Indianapolis with his older brother Robert, whose Cleveland Browns have never been to a Super Bowl.
“He always said no when I asked. He only wanted to go if the Cleveland Browns were going," Sterlacci said of going to the game with his brother. "Well I guess he’s finally given up on the Browns. He doesn’t know that feeling so maybe he’ll get a little bit of it when he sees my team win it again.”
The trip will mark his fourth time to the Super Bowl. Sterlacci went with a friend to see the Giants' first Super Bowl in 1987, when the pair paid just $75 each for tickets. He took his daughter to see Super Bowl XXV in 1991 and went back with another friend in 2001 for Super Bowl XXXV.
Just as he did in 1987, 1991 and 2001, Sterlacci will wear a No. 42 jersey in honor of his favorite player, Charlie Conerly. Sterlacci said he became a Conerly fan after witnessing dozens of touchdown drives in the first games he went to in 1958.
“I know the Giants have a history of good quarterbacks but Conerly is my guy and he’s the best the Giants have ever had,” Sterlacci said.
And what if New York pulls off a second Super Bowl victory with Eli Manning at the helm this Sunday?
“Conerly was the man and he’ll always be my favorite," Sterlacci said. "But if they win Sunday, maybe I’ll say Eli is the best. Maybe.”