Sunday’s NFC championship game between the Green Bay Packers and Atlanta Falcons will be the final football game at the Georgia Dome. Next season, the Falcons and college football games will move next door to the Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
The Georgia Dome is 25 years old, but it has been the site of more big sporting events than just about any other venue in the country. A selection of the biggest events:
1993 - Super Bowl XXVIII (Jan. 30, 1994)
The Dallas Cowboys defeated the Buffalo Bills, 30-13. The game marked the only time two teams have met in back-to-back Super Bowls, but it was better known as the fourth consecutive Super Bowl loss by the Bills.
1994 – “Prime Time” returns
On Oct. 16, former Falcons star Deion Sanders returned to the Georgia Dome for the first time as the 49ers routed Atlanta, 42-3 (the 39-point loss is the Falcons’ worst margin of defeat at the Dome). Sanders had a 93-yard interception return for a touchdown in the second quarter.
1996 - Magnificent Seven wins gold
At the Summer Olympics on July 23, Kerri Strug famously landed a vault on one foot, clinching the first team gold medal for the United States women’s gymnastics team.
1998 - Bulls vs. Hawks (NBA attendance record)
On March 27, while Philips Arena was under construction, an NBA regular-season record 62,046 fans packed into the Georgia Dome to see the hometown Hawks – um, Michael Jordan and the Bulls. Jordan scored 34 as the Bulls won by 15.
1999 - Super Bowl XXXIV (Jan. 30, 2000)
In one of the most memorable Super Bowl finishes in history, the St. Louis Rams’ “Greatest Show on Turf” defeated the Tennessee Titans, 23-16. The Titans’ Kevin Dyson was tackled one yard short of the end zone on the final play.
2002 - Final Four
The first of three Final Fours to take place at the Georgia Dome featured Maryland winning its only national title. The Terrapins defeated Kansas and Indiana as guard Juan Dixon was named Most Outstanding Player.
2003 - Women’s Final Four
The Connecticut Huskies won their fourth national title, defeating Tennessee in the championship game. In some ways, it marked a changing of the guard in women’s college basketball as the Huskies have won seven national titles since, and the Volunteers have won two.
2011 – WrestleMania XXVII
A crowd of 71,617 attended the marquee event in professional wrestling. The main event saw The Rock intervene in a match between John Cena and The Miz.
2012 – SEC championship game (Alabama vs. Georgia)
No. 2 Alabama held off No. 3 Georgia in one of the most exciting SEC title games ever. Trailing 32-28 with nine seconds remaining, Georgia receiver Chris Conley caught a tipped pass from Aaron Murray but slipped to the turf at the 4-yard line. With no timeouts remaining, Georgia was unable to run another play. The Crimson Tide went on to beat Notre Dame for the national title.
2013 - Final Four
Louisville took down Wichita State and Michigan in winning its third national championship. Rick Pitino became the only coach to win a national title at two schools.