CORVALLIS - Michael Oriard, a professor of English at Oregon State University, has been invited to participate in an inaugural Super Bowl Congress - a new event modeled after the Pre-Olympic Scientific Congress that looks at societal issues revolving around sports.

The Pre-Super Bowl Scientific Congress will run from Jan. 18-20 in San Diego, site of the 1998 Super Bowl. It features scholars from around the country who will discuss issues ranging from sports celebrities, to stadium financing, to gender issues.

Oriard will be featured on a special panel looking at the topic, "The Super Bowl and Patriarchal Culture." Also appearing on that panel will Pamela Creedon, of Kent State University, who is author of "Women, Media and Sport: Challenging Gender Values"; Heidi Spencer, former cheerleader with the San Diego Chargers; and others.

Oriard played football at Notre Dame University, then went to play professionally with the Kansas City Chiefs. After his career, he returned to college and earned a Ph.D. in American literature from Stanford University.

A successful author, Oriard has written several critically acclaimed books, including "Reading Football: How the Popular Press Created an American Spectacle."

The Super Bowl Congress is sponsored by San Diego State University.

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Mike Oriard, 541-737-1638