The moments that will be honored are from college and pro sports, including Michigan State's 2000 NCAA basketball championship. (Brian Bahr / Getty Images)
DETROIT -- A galaxy of stars representing a cross section of great athletes and performances spanning more than a century will be toasted and honored in the opening ceremonies for Super Bowl XL.
The top 40 moments in Detroit sports will be presented at "A Salute to Detroit" on Jan. 30 at the Fox Theatre.
They range from the 1901 University of Michigan point-a-minute football team to the Pistons' team that won the 2004 NBA championship.
"These moments are not only part of Detroit, but defining moments throughout the world of sports," Super Bowl XL Host Committee chairman Roger Penske said in a statement announcing the top 40 moments in Detroit's sports history.
The athletes or representatives of those involved in the top 40 events will be honored at a black-tie dinner at the Fox. Sportscaster Mike Tirico of ESPN and ABC will emcee the event.
The top 40 moments were voted on by members of Metro Detroit's media after a series of meetings and they will be presented in chronological order.
They include some of the most memorable events in sports history, not just Detroit and southeast Michigan.
Heavyweight boxing champion Joe Louis' first-round knockout of Max Schmeling in 1938, track star Jesse Owens breaking three world records and tying a fourth in one day at a track meet in Ann Arbor in 1935 and memorable home runs in baseball's All-Star Game by Ted Williams (1941) and Reggie Jackson (1971) are featured.
The Lions are represented by starting the Thanksgiving Day tradition in 1934, winning the NFL championship in 1957, Billy Sims' debut in 1980, the 1991 season in which they went 12-4 and beat Dallas in a divisional playoff and Barry Sanders rushing for 2,053 yards in 1997.
The Tigers are honored for Hank Greenberg hitting 58 homers in 1938, winning the World Series in 1968 and 1984, Denny McLain winning 31 games, Mark "The Bird" Fidrych taking baseball by storm in 1976, Al Kaline reaching the 3,000-hit mark and his Hall of Fame induction, and Ty Cobb setting the career hits record -- which was surpassed by Pete Rose.
For the Red Wings, Gordie Howe, the 1950s dynasty and the 1997 Stanley Cup champions that put Hockeytown on the map are recognized.
The Pistons' entries are the Bad Boys' back-to-back championships of 1989-90, the 2004 champs and Isiah Thomas' 25-point quarter in the 1988 Finals against the Lakers.
College sports and other individuals have made their mark.
In football, they include the 10-10 tie between Michigan State and Notre Dame in 1966, the Ohio State-Michigan rivalry and four Heisman Trophy winners -- Charles Woodson, Desmond Howard and Tom Harmon of Michigan, and Royal Oak native Pete Dawkins of Army.
The Larry Bird-Magic Johnson showdown for the 1979 NCAA basketball championship, won by Michigan State, is featured along with the national champions of MSU in 2000 and Michigan in 1989, and former Detroit Pershing and University of Detroit star Spencer Haywood leading the 1968 U.S. team to the Olympic gold medal in 1968.
There are two great golf achievements --Ben Hogan winning the 1951 U.S. Open at Oakland Hills and declaring he had "brought the Monster to its knees," and Arnold Palmer winning the 1954 U.S. Amateur at Country Club of Detroit.
In 2003, the Detroit Shock won the WNBA title.
Tickets are still available to the public at prices ranging from $125-$1,500.