The Wilson football: A lasting tradition

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“ADA, and the history, the family, everybody has a lot of pride and passion here,” Andy Wentling, Wilson plant manager said.

And being the birthplace of the NFL Super Bowl football is a job Wilson factory employees don’t take lightly.

The journey starts here, where Midwestern cowhide is carefully cut into panels. Once selected, the panels head to stamping.

This year they’re stamped with the Roman numerals for 54,
as the 49ers and the Kansas City Chiefs take on Miami in 2 weeks.

After the panels get stitched forming the football, the ball gets turned from the inside out. Then its laced up, and molded. After the football goes through molding, it then goes to packing, and then shipping.

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Each team gets 108 balls, 54 for practice and 54 for game time. Plan manager, Andy Wentling says a lot changes around the game, like uniforms and other technology. But the NFL demands these footballs are made the same each year.

Wentling leaves for the Super Bowl Thursday, but most of the employees are staying here. Knowing they played their part is reward enough.

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