The Super Bowl is infamous for being The Sports Event That Launched A Million Storylines. The lead-up to the big game is always prefaced by a gaggle of gushy coverage mining every cliche imaginable — players from disadvantaged backgrounds, players with troubled pasts, players who dog just died, players who never thought they’d make it this far, players with long and glorious hair… You name it, it’s been done. And now the scribbling masses have been served up a classic tale on a silver platter: The Harbaugh brothers.
Jim Harbaugh coaches the San Francisco 49ers. John Harbaugh coaches the Baltimore Ravens. And now the two teams are set to face each other in Super Bowl XLVII. It’ll mark just the second time the two coaches have stood on opposite sidelines, after a Nov. 2011 Ravens win over the 49ers.
As we all know, the relationship between brothers can be complicated. One minute you’re punching each other in the face, the next you’re rocking the Catalina Wine Mixer. Of course pro sports is no stranger to sibling rivalry. Up til now the NFL’s most high profile brother versus brother discussion has been the Manning Bros., Peyton and Eli. Hockey’s got the Sutters, the Staals, the Espositos, among others. Wayne and Keith Primeau even dropped the gloves. (Awkward.)
Perhaps the most famous sibling sports rivals are the Williams sisters, Serena and Venus. USA Today talked to Serena, right now at the Australian Open, about the upcoming Bro Bowl game and she thinks being coaches will make it easier on the Harbaughs. “I don’t know if it’s different when it comes to coaching because you’re not physically out there, you’re not physically trying to steal this person’s dream. So I think it could be a little different.”