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League ditches Roman numerals for Super Bowl 50

(Reuters) - The logo for the 50th Super Bowl in 2016 will take a one-year break from the tradition of using Roman numerals in favor of numbers, the National Football League said on Wednesday.

Super Bowl 50, which will determine the NFL's champion for the 2015 season, will be played on Feb. 7, 2016, at Levi's Stadium, the new home of the San Francisco 49ers.

Numerous reports suggested that after viewing many potential logos for the championship game it was determined that the Roman numeral for 50, an uppercase 'L', was not as pleasing to the eye as 50. The one-letter designation has also become a nearly universal hand signal for "loser."

But the NFL, which first used Roman numerals for Super Bowl V in 1971, said they decided to make the change simply to help celebrate the "milestone" game.

"If 'L' was the Roman numeral for (Super Bowls) 49 or 59, we wouldn't have done this, but because it is a historic milestone we made the change," said NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy.

"We could have made it work, but the concept was to elevate and celebrate America's favorite event with an interesting twist on a tradition unique to the NFL."

The NFL will return to Roman numerals for Super Bowl LI, which will be played in February 2017 at Houston's Reliant Stadium.

(Reporting by Frank Pingue in Toronto; Editing by Julian Linden)

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