New Hall of Fame finalist Edward DeBartolo Jr. looked up at the highest seats at second-year, $1.3 billion Levi’s Stadium and shrugged.
“Star Wars,” he quipped of his first impression of the 49ers’ snazzy new venue.
The former San Francisco owner, on hand for the season opener to support Charles Haley as he is recognized in the Edward DeBartolo Sr. Hall of Fame, made his first visit to the stadium Monday night and watched the 49ers’ 20-3 win over the Minnesota Vikings.
“I’ll tell you one thing, those seats are high, they really are,” DeBartolo said. “I don’t think I could walk up there, not with my knees.”
San Francisco won five Super Bowls in the 1980s and ’90s under his ownership. He wore his last Super Bowl ring for the special night.
“I don’t wear jewelry,” DeBartolo said.
Earlier this month, DeBartlo was named a finalist by the Hall of Fame contributors committee. Elections will be held on Feb. 6, the night before the Super Bowl, and the 68-year-old DeBartolo must receive 80 percent of the ballots.
Might he have an advantage with the vote being right here in the Bay Area?
“I hope,” he said, chuckling.
And his opinion of the 49ers’ black-based alternative uniforms — resembling the rival Raiders, of all teams?