The Immaculate Reception Revealed on the Sabol Camera

A Football Life, Oakland Raiders, Pittsburgh Steelers, TCIPF Staff, Uncategorized

Before he was the President of NFL Films, Steve Sabol was a cinematographer. And he was at the Immaculate Reception game, capturing sideline sound. Here for the first time, is what he captured.

When the play happened, the Raiders seemed destined for certain victory. It was fourth down, there were only 22 seconds remaining and the Steelers had stalled on their own 40-yard-line. Steve positioned himself on the Raiders sidelines, over the shoulder of Oakland’s Hall of Fame Tackle, Art Shell, hoping to capture the exultant reaction of the Silver & Black. Pay attention for two things – in the upper left-hand corner, you can see the collision between Tatum and Fuqua. Also listen to the roar of the crowd. Stephen J. Dubner, in his account of his childhood deification of Franco Harris, Confessions of a Hero-Worshiper ,described it this way: “It sounded as though fifty thousand people had been locked in a train bound for hell and, when the doors opened, they found they had somehow been diverted to heaven.”

For more on the play, watch “The Immaculate Reception: A Football Life” on Wednesday at 8 p.m. ET, only on NFL Network.

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