If you have no rooting interest in Super Bowl 48, consider cheering for the Northstate. Red Bluff is represented.
It is hard to believe but the small town is on display on the big stage.
Millions of people will be watching Sunday. A few people in Tehama County will be keeping an eye on a Denver Broncos coach who has gone from Northstate talent to the top of his profession.
It is a dream come true for coach Clancy Barone.
"It's exciting. That's obvious,” he said. “The thing is when we won our game against the patriots for the right to go to the Super Bowl that was kind of overwhelming.”
For his mother, Hazel, it was a classic story of a proud family.
"I was on top of everything. I mean, I could hardly believe it,” said Clancy’s mother Hazel Barone. “It's what he's been wanting ever since he started coaching."
Hazel still lives in Red Bluff where her son, Clancy, was a former Red Bluff High School football captain. He graduated as a Spartans star in the ‘80s, going from college player to pro coach over nearly three decades.
“Well that certainly is not a meteoric rise to the top, you know. I spent 18 years in college football coaching in, I think, seven or eight different states all over the country."
On Super Bowl Sunday he will be at the pinnacle of his profession after getting so close twice before.
“That was my third time getting to that [conference championship] game. The first two times - once I was with the Falcons and we lost to the Eagles. The second time I was with the Chargers and we lost to the Patriots. So you get that close to go to the biggest game in the world and you miss out."
No matter the outcome he still got the support from back home.
“I was telling him that I was sorry they lost and he said well somebody's got to lose, you know,” said Hazel. “But he said, ‘of course I was hoping.’ I said, ‘well baby your day will come.’"
The third time is the charm in 2014. The current Broncos’ tight ends coach is working alongside some of the National Football League’s greats.
He still has the connections to the Northstate and they are a proud group of people. Coach Barone said he feels honored to have grown up in a city like Red Bluff and never took things for granted.
"My mom is still back home. My brothers and sister all live out in the area still, so I've heard from each one of them and they're excited about it,” said Clancy. “No one says that being from Red Bluff is a handicap. It's just a matter of making sure that you keep working for it and not take no for an answer."
He has fought for where he has ended up. He will likely have to fight the frigid temperatures on the east coast. Cold weather is expected for kickoff of Super Bowl XLVIII against the Seattle Seahawks Sunday evening at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. Barone said playing in extreme weather is nothing new.
"Here's the thing - it could be 115 degrees during the summer when I was growing up. I never noticed it,” Barone said. “I never noticed it when I was a kid. I'd be out there playing ball all day every day."
He is ready to go.
"Let's tee it up and kick it off and see what happens,” said Barone. “I just want to get this thing going."