The Terrible Towel is a gimmick created by Myron Cope, a
broadcaster for the Pittsburgh Steelers. Needing a way to excite the fans
during a 1975 playoff game against
the Baltimore Colts, Cope urged fans to take yellow dish towels to the
game and wave them throughout. The Steelers players themselves were
unenthused, saying they weren't "a gimmick team." Nevertheless,
the stands were filled with yellow towels that day, and the Steelers
always seemed to complete terrific plays when the towels were waving. The
Steelers won that game 28-10.
The Steelers introduced yellow towels with the words "Myron Cope's
Terrible Towel" in black on them just in time for Super
Bowl X. The Steelers went on to win, "thanks to the Towels,"
many claimed, against the Dallas Cowboys.
Today, there's many other types of Terrible Towels for sale, such as
golf towels, black towels, beach towels, and towels with the Steelers logo
on it. In addition, fans of many other college and NFL teams have begun
waving towels in their teams colors.